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What is a flash "button-tube"?

 
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Ichthyophthirius



Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 800

PostPosted: Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:44 am    Post subject: What is a flash "button-tube"? Reply with quote

Hi,

In the paper:

Patterson D. J., 1982. Photomicrography using a dedicated electronic flash. Microscopy, 34, 437–442

I found this:

"The most efficient shape is a small disc-shaped electronic flash-tube referred to as a button-tube."

Does anyone know what "button-tube" might refer to? There are doughnut-shaped flash tubes but that's not meant here? Google-searches have turned up nothing. What mystery 1980s tech is this?

Regards, Ichty
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enricosavazzi



Joined: 21 Nov 2009
Posts: 1041
Location: Stockholm, Sweden

PostPosted: Thu Feb 22, 2018 6:15 am    Post subject: Re: What is a flash "button-tube"? Reply with quote

Ichthyophthirius wrote:
Hi,

In the paper:

Patterson D. J., 1982. Photomicrography using a dedicated electronic flash. Microscopy, 34, 437–442

I found this:

"The most efficient shape is a small disc-shaped electronic flash-tube referred to as a button-tube."

Does anyone know what "button-tube" might refer to? There are doughnut-shaped flash tubes but that's not meant here? Google-searches have turned up nothing. What mystery 1980s tech is this?

Regards, Ichty

I have never heard of it. However, I would not be too concerned. There is no real need for a high-efficiency, specialized flash tube when using a perfectly ordinary straight flash tube from a speedlight and masking off all but a short portion of its length still produces more than enough light for photomicrography. It is just a matter of taking care that the unused light and heat do not do any damage, by providing an enclosure with sufficient cooling. This is not too difficult with the tube and circuitry of an ordinary battery-operated speedlight. I have seen on the web simple home-made designs that place a power LED just behind the exposed portion of flash tube to provide continuous and flash illumination from the same source for transmitted-light microscopy.
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Ichthyophthirius



Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 800

PostPosted: Thu Feb 22, 2018 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is the description in context. Unfortunately there is no illustration of the button-tube anywhere in the paper.

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