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Film Damage from Handheld Metal Detector Wand?


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Although I've forgotten most of my university particle physics stuff - visible light is a part of the electromagnetic spectrum - probably why metal detectors are thought of as a possible threat to film, especially as they are AC and therefore have a frequency and all those other associated scary words like wavelength etc...

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I used to be an airport security screener and it would always amuse me when someone would go to great lengths to practically berate me about hand-checking all of his camera gear (it's no problem, just when they're a-holes) outside of the x-ray machine, inside which there's virtually no chance for damage. Yet he'd then walk through the metal detector (which IS magnetic), and set it off as a result of film canisters in his pockets. Heh heh heh. Happened several times.

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  • 3 weeks later...
Although I've forgotten most of my university particle physics stuff - visible light is a part of the electromagnetic spectrum - probably why metal detectors are thought of as a possible threat to film, especially as they are AC and therefore have a frequency and all those other associated scary words like wavelength etc...

 

This should clear it up.

 

Film gets messed up from exposure and stuff(i use video.) Video gets messed up from magnets. Yes visible light is electromagnetic, not magnetic, and metal detectors are magnetic, as they do not put off energy in the form as heat, sound, light, etc. therefore they must not be electromagnetic(light) waves. That is why whenever I go through an airport I have to take care of my tapes, but film should be just fine.

(7th grade is your first year of physical science... I'm 13)

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Metal detectors work by induction. They detect the change in a magnetic field caused by a metal object. So, while the metal can might set them off, they don't put out any radiation that can damage the film.

So the answer is no.

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