Guest Posting: The Shroud of Turin – An X-Ray?

imageIn 1999, investigative reporter Linda Moulton Howe interviewed the now-late chemist Dr. Giles Carter.  The interview was posted on her site, Earthfiles. Because the interview is behind a subscriber wall, Linda has kindly given Joe Marino permission to reproduce the (copyrighted) interview below as it appears on her site.

The Shroud of Turin – An X-Ray?

© 1999 by Linda Moulton Howe

May 23, 1999 Clemson, South Carolina – Back in the early 1980’s while I was Director of Special Projects at the CBS station in Denver, Colorado, I read a newspaper report about an American Chemical Society meeting in which a chemist named Giles Carter from Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan presented a formal paper entitled: Formation of the Image on the Shroud of Turin by X-rays: A New Hypothesis. (© 1982 Giles F. Carter, Ph.D., Eastern Michigan University Chemistry Department, Ypsilanti, Michigan received for review Oct. 6, 1982 and accepted for publication April 18, 1983, American Chemical Society Volume on Archaeological Chemistry.)

I was so provoked by this news that I called Dr. Carter up to talk about the laboratory work that had helped him come to this startling idea. Dr. Carter received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley where he specialized in x-ray diffraction to determine crystal structures. He went on to be a Professor of Chemistry at Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, and is now Professor Emeritus. Dr. Carter began studying Roman coins with x-ray fluorescence in 1963. Over the next 32 years until he retired in 1995, Dr. Carter used x-ray fluorescence continually in his university work analyzing hundreds of coins, elements and metals. In 1981, he attended a Shroud of Turin Research Project in New London, Connecticut and saw slides of the image on the Shroud for the first time.


Giles Carter, Ph.D., retired Professor of Chemistry and X-Ray Fluorescence Expert from Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, Michigan: "It was at that time, I noticed from the slides what appeared to be possibly x-ray images of fingers and also of teeth. And that began, or gave me the idea that perhaps low energy x-rays were involved in the formation of these images on the Shroud. Then, when I went home to East Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan, I carried out some experiments similar to what I had done with the analysis of Roman coins — namely I placed samples of cloth in the x-ray beam and exposed that to the x-rays for different periods of time. And noticed that I did indeed get images formed on the cloth. And these images did appear certainly in color similar to what I had seen in the slides, because I had not seen the Shroud of Turin directly myself. Never have.

So, I carried out quite a few experiments exposing cloth to various exposures, putting aluminum foil in the path of the x-rays which absorbed the low energy x-rays and when I did that I didn’t get much of an image at all. And that proved that most of the image I was getting was from low energy x-rays which was my hypothesis in the first place. 
After producing a number of these, I took a trip out to Calif. For to see family and at that time I arranged to see Vernon Miller who was the official photographer in the 1978 testing that the STURP scientists did.

At that time, Vernon Miller said, "Oh, this coloration is just like the coloration on the Shroud." And at that point, he gave me a nice enlargement of the hand of the Shroud. And this helped to convince me even more that what a lot of people called the "too long fingers" and the shortened wrist actually was both an image from the surface and an x-ray image all at the same time. And that would be in agreement with my hypothesis that a lot of the Shroud image was actually formed from low energy x-rays.


My hypothesis for that is that higher energy x-rays which are more penetrating emanated from the bones of this individual and passed through the skin and at the surface of the skin interacted with elements such as sodium and chlorine from salts and chloride on the surface or from sulfur or phosphorous in the skin. And these elements then, like sodium and chlorine, gave off secondary x-rays which are very low in energy and not penetrating at all. And it’s these x-rays that actually caused most of the image, or all of the image, of the Shroud.

Now, people have asked me: Where did the x-rays from the bones come from? And I cannot answer that question. If one believes that the Shroud of Turin actually covered the body of Christ, then one would say, "Well, from the Resurrection Process." But no scientist can say anything about a resurrection process because there is no direct experience with that other than perhaps the Shroud, but we don’t know about that at all. So, in other words, scientifically you can say nothing about the Resurrection Process.

On the other hand, artistically it’s rather interesting — for instance, in the film ET, the extraterrestrial or alien was resurrected by a strong beam of light. I always thought that was rather curious that they would choose that sort of thing. And who knows, what the Resurrection Process was for Christ according to Christian belief. No one knows about that. No scientists can really do anything other than speculate.

So again, I had offered one explanation that perhaps there was radiation in the rocks around where the body was laid. But one of my friends said, "That really is not a very good explanation." And I agree. That’s very, very weak and I doubt that happened. Basically, I have no explanation.


The only thing that I would say is that some form of energy would have been necessary to enter the bones to cause x-rays to emanate from the bones. And that would cause the secondary, or even tertiary at this point, x-rays from the skin to come out. So, what that energy source was — the external energy source entering the bones — I really don’t know about that. It’s just beyond us , beyond me to speculate on that. I really can’t say.


Well, there have been several hypotheses put forward to explain in certain peoples minds why the Carbon 14 dating was wrong. My own feeling on that is that linen fibrils are hollow and the sample taken from the Shroud for the Carbon 14 dating was taken from absolutely the worst possible place — namely, one lower corner which was right next to the edge of the Shroud and it was also the corner, or one of the corners, where people handled it the most. Now if people handled that or if materials were put on the Shroud in an attempt to preserve it hundreds of years ago, it’s possible that over along period of time that some of these organic materials could have diffused or moved through the linen fibrils and into the interior. Now, if this is the case, it would have been impossible through just a short cleaning, using just solvents which the scientists used before the Carbon-14 testing — it would have been impossible to remove that interior carbon-containing material.


Right, they would be measuring more recent carbon-containing material, maybe from 100 or 200 years ago, or something like that. So they would just be getting the average age coming out around 1300 A.D.


That’s possible. And that’s why I think the Carbon-14 dating should be repeated and done very carefully according to the procedure that the Shroud of Turin Research Project outlined in the first place. Their procedure was NOT followed at all in the Carbon-14 testing. So, the whole testing process was — in the opinion of many scientists, not done very well. It’s not that the carbon-14 test itself was poor. I think most everyone says that the laboratories are capable of getting good results from the sample they have. But it’s namely, a sampling problem. So always in an analysis, you have both a problem of sampling. Is the sample what you want it to be? Is it representative of the material that you want analyzed? And then is the analysis itself correct? There are two different problems. The analysis itself could be correct, but if the sampling is not done correctly, then the end result is going to be wrong.


That’s correct. There’s one other factor there and that is that the sample that was taken for the Carbon-14 analysis was removed from a position adjacent to a side panel which had been sewn onto the Shroud. It wasn’t sewn on using thread or anything like that. It was actually WOVEN on to the material, so some of the weaving from that side panel was actually in some of those fibers in the sample that was removed for the Carbon-14 date. No one knows when that side panel of 6-inches or so was applied to the Shroud. No one knows that! And here again, those more possibly recent fibrils could have affected the Carbon-14 dates.


That’s a good question! It remains unanswered. The Italian authorities decided to change where the sample was removed and perhaps they did that because there was political pressure applied over there. Many years ago I attended a meeting in Naples with the scientist who was in charge of advising the Roman Catholic Church about the Shroud and he told me enormous political pressures had been applied on him in the past about the Shroud. There were many people in Italy and Europe who first of all were opposed to scientists examining the Shroud at all.

Secondly, they were opposed to scientists from the United States being so heavily involved. They wanted more Italians and more Europeans represented. So, here again, it’s difficult to know what happened there. No one really knows outside the people who were really there at the time. And I think we can only speculate that maybe pressure had been brought to bear — no, we will not follow the STURP, which was American-proposed procedure for doing the Carbon-14. We will do it according — we will take a sample from a place that won’t be noticed in the future from the Shroud — take it from that lower corner. And only have 3 labs run the carbon-14, instead of 7 labs. And have it done by only one method instead of two methods which the STURP had proposed."

Photograph is from the Eastern Michigan University Department of Chemistry Newsletter published in the Spring of 2011.

42 thoughts on “Guest Posting: The Shroud of Turin – An X-Ray?”

  1. If the image on the Shroud was actually formed as Prof. Giles Carter,
    then it should be still worth the idea of going to perform the preliminary experiments of control (with exposure in parallel with SSNTDs as witnesses for radiations) as
    I had indicated in my rejected paper for Dallas (2005) …

    In a previous message on this blog
    (February 26, 2015 at 8:58 am) I wrote:
    >…In the past (rejected paper for Dallas Conference, 2005)
    I proposed the use of AFM and SSNTD to testify
    the level of radiations during the experiments (simulations)…

    I believe that during Measuring Mechanical Properties with AFM
    (Atomic Force Microscopy) we can try to detect the possible
    origin of the B.I.F. (we can guess something because in the case
    of X-ray emissions, the linen materials become more brittle and
    this seems to be far from the reality of the Shroud … but
    I have some doubt regarding the toughness and elasticity
    for the [so called] “ghosts”. However this can be an effect
    resulting only from aging…)
    — — —
    Here an old study (2007) with a reference based on cellulose nitrate:

    “Bulk etch characteristics of colorless LR 115 SSNTD”
    K.C.C. Tse, F.M.F. Ng, D. Nikezic, K.N. Yu

    [LR 115 solid-state nuclear track detector = cellulose nitrate].

    So, it will be interesting to find all the details (using the adequate SSNTD).

    For example, I have read that:
    >… … results on oak cells revealed that cellulose and hemicellulose are less sensitive to radiation damage than cellulose acetate, once again demonstrating the complexity of the radiation damage issue and its dependence on the matrix composition …
    — —
    The situation.
    Despite the fact to try to “popularize” ideas [about the use of AFM techniques
    and SSNTD], that doesn’t mean, of course, that we have solve the Enigma.
    We should work with adequate experiments in order to show the entire truth
    about the true epoch for that ancient material (and here I beg your pardon
    about my previous rough words around the idea of dating the ancient
    wooden box by Otto de la Roche [= a less important operation])
    and the Image Formation.

    1. Sorry. I have some problem with English language…

      Errata corrige:

      >If the image on the Shroud was actually formed
      as Prof. Giles Carter wrote,


      >If the image on the Shroud was actually formed
      like what Prof. Giles Carter wrote,

      Instead of :
      >If the image on the Shroud was actually
      formed as Prof. Giles Carter, …

  2. Personally, I find discussions about how the image could have been formed if it really does date to the time of Christ to be almost pointless. If the shroud wrapped a crucified man at the time of Jesus, it is astronomically certain to have been Jesus himself. And if so, then it means that God arranged for this photographic miracle to document Jesus’ resurrection. If God did it, then he can do whatever he wants, including suspending the ordinary laws of nature. In this sense, the Shroud of Turin is like the Tilma of Guadaloupe, a 500-year-old image of the Blessed Virgin Mary on a flimsy cactus fiber cloak that should have disintegrated centuries ago. No one has been able to explain how that image was formed either, or what sustains the material upon which it appears.

    On the other hand, if the shroud is a medieval forgery, then it is incumbent upon those asserting such a position to demonstrate how this image with all its biological fluids was created at a time when photography was unknown, much less the properties of a photographic negative. So far, no one has come close to accomplishing this task so the vast majority of these Shroud of Turin comments, claims and observations just form a closed loop of irrelevance.

    No offense, Dan. I like your blog and intend to keep following it.

  3. Thank you Dan for this posting. I am a strong believer that X-Rays (or simmilar type of radiation) were emitted from the body of Jesus during the Resurrection Process and as a result of that image was formed on the burial cloth.

    As Jesus was the only one resurrected from death, it is impossible to stimulate that rwsurrection process. No one knows what sort of energy emitted during spirit (or/and soul) came back to the material body (or flesh) of Jesus.

  4. The gospel of Matthew reports that there was an earthquake with after-shocks following the crucifixion of Jesus. Earthquakes release radioactive radon gas from within the earth, which is the second-most frequent cause of cancer in apartment buildings in seismic areas. Radon release low-energy radiation. What is the frequency of this radiation? Would it match the frequency of those in Giles Carter’s experiments with imaged cloths? Need we say more?

    1. Andy, Giles Carter has made some interesting observations from within his particular area of expertise, and discussed them with Vern Miller, STURP photographer, and obtained some positive comment from him. You have made a dogmatic assertion seemingly dismissive of what is said, but without giving any reasons, and without knowing how the image was in fact formed. Are you able to give any reasons why X-rays might not have been involved in any way with the Shroud image or not? If so, what are they?

  5. If X-rays are the reason for forming the image, then as historians claimed TS is not a 14th centuary creation.

    1. Very true. I believe the X-ray hypothesis lies in an interpretation particularly of the finger-bones and teeth. I’m not clear why the ribs, which are also bones near the surface of the skin, did not leave any X-ray like markings. Why X-rays should emerge from bone-marrow eludes me, but if they did, I’m surprised not to see at least some indication of the double bones of the lower arms and legs, or of any representation of the spine on the dorsal image.

      1. Thank you Louis. Considering all the properties/aspects of the image of TS I am quite sure that it is not a man made thing.

  6. I have read your speeches and your speculations,
    but I see that you do not take well into consideration
    the elementary truth: in my opinion only the adequate
    analyses can say something of true.
    Maybe I’m too harsh in my criticism of your behavior
    towards the idea of analyses that they can finally
    unmask the possible imaginative claims.
    — — —
    LR 115 is a solid-state nuclear track detector (SSNTD)
    based on cellulose nitrate and is commonly used
    for measurements of concentrations of radon gas
    and/or radon progeny.
    — — —
    Then the question whose we should answer
    (using the SSNTDs as “witnesses” for calibration…)
    is the following:
    “How many Gy are needed to create an image
    on linen similar to the famous Image we can see on the Shroud?”
    — — —
    Here an explanation about “Gy”:
    >The gray (symbol: Gy) is a derived unit of ionizing radiation
    dose in the International System of Units (SI).
    >It is defined as the absorption of one joule of
    radiation energy by one kilogram of matter. …

    >… The gray was named after British physicist Louis Harold Gray,
    a pioneer in the field of X-ray and radium radiation measurement,
    and their effects on living tissue.
    > It was adopted as part of the International System of Units in 1975. …


    1. I wrote the previous note also because
      today we celebrate the World Metrology Day
      that celebrates the signature by Representatives of
      seventeen nations of the Metre Convention on 20 May 1875…


      When we write opinions on the origin of the footprint
      of the body on the Shroud, then it would be better
      to strengthen them with concrete measurements
      (performed with adequate experiments…).

  7. I should think that the idea of X-rays originating from within bones is improbable. I suspect that there may well be good reasons why radon gas might be the source of some X-ray-like features of the Shroud image. Radon is far more prevalent than is generally realised, and there is quite a good Wiki article on radon.

    Most web-pages on radon seem to concentrate on the health issues, and it can be difficult to find some useful scientific info. 222Rn is a decay product of radium with a half-life of 3.8 days. While 222Rn itself is an inert gas, some of its very many daughter decay products (other Rn isotypes) are solid, typically adhering to dust particles in the air, but have very short half-lifes, most of them less than 1 hour.

    The dominant radiation from 222Rn is alpha, helium nucleii, which travel only a short distance and are not penetrating. There is some beta (free electrons) which may travel a few feet. However there is also some gamma radiation, which could result in X-ray-like imagery. The low energy of the gamma, may explain why the TS X-ray-like imagery is limited to a few areas only, notably the teeth and finger phalanges. The gamma emission of 222Rn is sufficient to have been used for treatment of cancer cells.

    Extract from Wiki article:
    “Radon has been used in implantable seeds, made of gold or glass, primarily used to treat cancers. The gold seeds were produced by filling a long tube with radon pumped from a radium source, the tube being then divided into short sections by crimping and cutting. The gold layer keeps the radon within, and filters out the alpha and beta radiations, while allowing the gamma rays to escape (which kill the diseased tissue). The activities might range from 0.05 to 5 millicuries per seed (2 to 200 MBq). The gamma rays are produced by radon and the first short-lived elements of its decay chain (218Po, 214Pb, 214Bi, 214Po).”

    Most radon seems to originate from within igneous and metamorphic rocks, but also to a lesser extent in sedimentary, including limestones and shales. It has also been associated with caves and springs. Note that aragonite limestone as occurs in Jerusalem, is commonly associated with caves and springs.

    If radon has been a factor in forming the TS image, is it conceivable that the heavier, short-distance alpha particles might have had some kind of collimating effect in whatever particulates produced the TS image, and might even account for the orthogonality of the image?

    I am wondering if there may be much more in the significance of Matthew’s reporting of an earthquake (which releases radon) at the time of the crucifixion, than others have seem prepared to acknowledge. It does not require a catastrophic earthquake, but only a moderate one of about R.5.0 . We have a few of these every year in New Zealand, a little disturbing at the time, but we get used to it.

  8. You know that I love the analytical field and often I distrust critically the claims about radiation …
    — —
    What is your idea about the possible use
    of Terahertz nondestructive evaluation?


    See also:
    Terahertz Non-Destructive Evaluation of Textile Ropes and Slings
    Scott Schecklman, Gabriel Kniffin, Lisa Zurk
    Portland State University

    — —
    >Terahertz radiation falls in between infrared radiation and
    microwave radiation in the electromagnetic spectrum, and
    it shares some properties with each of these.
    >Like infrared and microwave radiation, terahertz radiation travels
    in a line of sight and is non-ionizing.
    >Like microwave radiation, terahertz radiation can penetrate
    a wide variety of non-conducting materials.
    >Terahertz radiation can pass through clothing, paper,
    cardboard, wood, masonry, plastic and ceramics.
    >The penetration depth is typically less than that of
    microwave radiation.
    >Terahertz radiation has limited penetration through fog
    and clouds and cannot penetrate liquid water or metal. …


    — — —

    Terahertz time-domain spectroscopy for textile identification
    M. Naftaly, J. F. Molloy, G. V. Lanskii, K. A. Kokh, and Yu. M. Andreev

    >A range of natural and artificial textiles are examined using
    terahertz time-domain spectroscopy.
    >Different types of textiles are shown to have different
    terahertz optical properties, which may be employed for
    textile identification and to combat textile counterfeiting.

    — — —
    Here the a vague reference:

    Microchimica Acta
    August 2008, Volume 162,
    Issue 3-4, pp 303-312
    Date: 14 Dec 2007

    “State of the art: non-invasive interrogation of textiles in museum collections”
    by Emma Richardson, Graham Martin, Paul Wyeth, Xiaomei Zhang.
    — — —
    In any case I always try to be wary of claims about radiations
    and I also prefer the AFM techniques in order to properly
    investigate linen fibrils involved in BIF …
    Atomic force microscopy offers the capability of imaging
    surface structure at the subnanometer resolution.
    — —

    Methods Mol Biol. 2012;908:23-30.
    Imaging cellulose using atomic force microscopy.
    Ding SY1, Liu YS.


    Perhaps the linen microfibrils flexibility can be investigated
    by using the AFM tip as a nanomanipulator…

    In any case we have to observe which are the exact
    differences between the linen material treated
    with X-rays with respect the material as it is…

    I think that gamma rays are to be excluded as the source
    of the Image because of their known heavy effect on cellulose
    (the Image on the cloth is there for centuries and the fibrils have stood
    many times the rolling up of the fabric without breaking!).

  9. Piero, I do not assert that gamma rays are the primary source of the Image, for the reason you have indicated. The image process would seem to have been highly complex, as if it was simple it would be known by now. The gospel of Matthew seems emphatic that there was an earthquake, and this does not seem to be a merely literary device, as he also mentions an after-shock before the women visit on the Sunday. Earthquakes release radon gas, which has a half-life of 3.8 days, with very many daughter products. Most of the gamma radiation comes from the decay product 214-Bi. It would not be a great amount.

    Any X-ray-like properties of the image are only slight, and seem to be limited to the teeth and the phalanges, perhaps there are a few others. The cloth around the teeth and fingers would need to be examined and perhaps there may be clues of slight gamma ray damage there. But we do not know.

    222-Radon has very many decay products, some of them other isotopes of Radon, but they are very short-lived, most with half-lifes of less than 1 hour. Whether there would be any terahertz radiation resulting from this process, and what its results might be, I do not know. I find it difficult to obtain detailed technical information on the process, most of the radon web-pages only being focused on health issues. Alpha and beta particles are also generated by the decay, and perhaps had some role in the process.

    Although the amounts involved would be quite small, I am saying that radiation may still have had some significant effect on forming the image without undue damage, but it is not necessarily the primary cause.

    1. There are a lot of things we don’t want to share…
      For example: the destructions (here I refer to the C14 tests).
      There are those who say: “No, thank you”
      and they propose other ways to investigate the ancient material.

      I am against the analyses based on older C14 tests.

      That’s why we should roll up our sleeves and focus on
      the many positive aspects that our minds have to compete, against
      the vain destructions. All together, believers and not.

      So… I do not rule entirely out the C14 (ie: control tests of a new type,
      requiring very little material), but first I want to exactly see
      what we get from the non-destructive microscopic controls…
      In any case the Carbon-14 dating should be repeated
      with new instruments (and we can obtain more exact results)
      and done very carefully…
      — —
      Here what I have found today surfing the Web:

      >How much radiation is emitted from a human being?

      >All of us have a number of naturally occurring radionuclides within our bodies. The major one that produces penetrating gamma radiation that can escape from the body is a radioactive isotope of potassium, called potassium-40. This radionuclide has been around since the birth of the earth and is present as a tiny fraction of all the potassium in nature.

      >Potassium-40 (40K) is the primary source of radiation from the human body for two reasons. First, the 40K concentration in the body is fairly high. Potassium is ingested in many foods that we eat and is a critically important element for proper functioning of the human body; it is present in pretty much all the tissues of the body. The amount of the radioactive isotope 40K in a 70-kg person is about 5,000 Bq, which represents 5,000 atoms undergoing radioactive decay each second.

      >Second, 40K emits gamma rays in a little over 10 percent of its decays and most of these gamma rays escape the body. A gamma ray is emitted in about one out of every 10 disintegrations of 40K, implying that about 500 gamma rays are produced each second. These will be moving in all directions, some will be attenuated in the body, and the dose rate from these gamma rays outside of the individual’s body will represent a very small fraction of the normal background dose rate from all natural sources outside the body.

      >If a person is above average in weight, the dose rate outside of this person’s body will expectedly be higher than the dose outside the body of a lower-weight individual. In both cases, however, the dose rate will be extremely small compared to the normal background dose rate. The heavier person will receive a greater internal dose because the decay of the 40K produces other low-penetrating radiation (beta radiation) that deposits its energy within the body. However, the dose to the heavier individual will not be significantly different from that to the lower-weight individual because the energy deposited per unit body mass is the dose-determining factor, and this will be about the same for both individuals.

      >There are many other radionuclides in the human body, but these either are present at lower levels than 40K (for example, 238U, 232Th, and their decay products) or they do not emit gamma rays that can escape the body (for example, 14C and 87Rb). Radon (and its decay products) is not a significant source of radiation from humans because it is present at very low levels in the body.

      >There is one other very minor mechanism by which the human body acts as a source of radiation: some of the gamma rays emitted by the radionuclides in the environment interact with the atoms in our bodies by what is known as the photoelectric effect. The result is the emission of x rays by these atoms. …

      — — —
      So, our body (with the normal levels of radiation)
      can not produce an Image like that of the Shroud
      Then …
      Do you think at “enhanced radioactive emissions” as
      “possible solution” of the problem?

      But… where is the certified evidence for this particular hypothesis?

      In any case we need the adequate analyses and
      I have (previously) indicated (in a rough manner… Sorry)
      what we can do.
      I repeat: I prefer to use the AFM techniques in order to properly
      investigate linen fibrils involved in B.I.F. (= Body Image Formation) …

      These are just ideas of scientific control,
      therefore there is not a faith-based approach.
      Anyone (believers or non-believers, if they’re really
      honest and serious) can perform the checks…
      — — —
      I see that my message has become very long.
      So I apologize!

      1. I have read that:
        >…the future only exists as a probability wave function formed by the quantum wave particle function Ψ of quantum mechanics with the future continuously coming into existence light photon by light photon.
        What this thing can change in our understanding of the Shroud?
        … And as you see now, I went off topic!
        — —
        It would be better to stick to what claimed prof. Giles Carter, Ph.D., retired Professor of Chemistry and X-Ray Fluorescence Expert …
        — — —
        Unfortunately we have not done an experiment on an ET
        (the extraterrestrial or alien) that can be resurrected by a strong beam of light…

        Last Saturday I accidentally cut the tail of a serpent
        (a slowworm) and the tail is still motion, for half an hour …
        But this is a trivial fact.
        In addition, the tail of the poor animal is certainly not survived for three days!

        1. Dear daveb,
          Do you know where we can find an experimental part in the work of Giles Carter?

          I ask to you because I want to better understand what
          you wrote:
          >The images that Giles Carter obtained did not result from radiation within the objects, but came from external sources.

          I tried to search using the address:

          Click to access n49part3.pdf

          but I have found nothing of useful…
          — —
          Now excuse me, I have to write a short note:

          Since the study of Nature is an important issue I think is good to add to what I wrote yesterday (about the alleged “snake”) what I write now:

          The Anguis fragilis, better known as the slow-worm is a particular lizard that is often mistaken for a snake because of his physical appearance. This reptile, in fact, has the elongated body and is devoid of legs.

          Seeing also under another address, I have found
          the similar words:
          >Being a legless lizard, the slow worm (Anguis fragilis) is often mistaken for a snake. However, there are certain features that separate the slow worm from snakes, including the presence of eyelids and ear openings …


          — —
          So, as we have seen, the study of Nature is an important issue, and then I think the claims about the connection between the Radon gas and the particular images (“similar” to those of the Shroud) that was able to produce Giovanna de Liso should be deepened…

    2. Piero, Thank you for your posting on natural body radiation, particularly from 40-K.

      You write: ” … the dose rate from these gamma rays outside of the individual’s body will represent a very small fraction of the normal background dose rate from all natural sources outside the body.” I have read that most of the background radiation is due to radon.

      An earthquake will release radon from within the earth. I think it may be this radon from an earthquake that might account for some of the X-ray attributes of the Shroud image. You will be familiar with work of Giovanna de Liso, who investigated seismic effects in Piedmont and produced a few images on cloth. She only obtained images under very specific circumstances, and this included only when radon was released.

      You also write: “There is one other very minor mechanism by which the human body acts as a source of radiation: some of the gamma rays emitted by the radionuclides in the environment interact with the atoms in our bodies by what is known as the photoelectric effect. The result is the emission of x rays by these atoms. …”

      I also note that in posting above Giles Carter says: “My hypothesis for that is that higher energy x-rays which are more penetrating emanated from the bones of this individual and passed through the skin and at the surface of the skin interacted with elements such as sodium and chlorine from salts and chloride on the surface or from sulfur or phosphorous in the skin. And these elements then, like sodium and chlorine, gave off secondary x-rays which are very low in energy and not penetrating at all. And it’s these x-rays that actually caused most of the image, or all of the image, of the Shroud.”

      I do not believe it is necessary for high energy X-rays to emanate from the bones of the person, which requires a miracle. But I wonder if it is possible that the radon emissions from within the earth might have reacted with the body salts to produce the same effect.

      1. Daveb -I do not believe it is necessary for high energy X-rays to emanate from the bones of the person, which requires a miracle

        Yes resurrection is a miracle. But to get a image like TS radiation have to come from internally (from the body) and nor from externally

      2. I disagree. I have already noted that the X-ray-like attributes are isolated to particular areas. The images that Giles Carter obtained did not result from radiation within the objects, but came from external sources. If there were gamma rays, or even terahertz rays present from an external source within the tomb they still might produce an image through proximity of body and linen. Alternatively the rays may have stimulated a secondary radiation on the body salts. As I have already stated, I do not assert that the primary cause of the image was due to radiation, but that it may have had some significant role in effecting the image. It is not an “either – or” but “both – and”.

      3. addendum to above: De Liso’s images came from external radon, as a result of seismic action.

        1. Hi Daveb – Shroud image is quite different to De Liso’s images. By his method he can’t get both Dorsal and Frontal images. To get frontal and dorsal images radiation has to come from inside..

        2. Hi Sampath
          If it really is Jesus the source was external, but the process was internal.

      4. I repeat. I do not believe that radiation is the primary cause of the image. It was ancillary. I think it influenced the forming of the image. I have yet to be persuaded that it was the primary cause of the image.

      5. Why the search for naturalistic explanations? If it is the true burial shroud of Jesus then the image is probably miraculous and unexplainable by science.

      6. Because, Thomas, it is reasonable to explore naturalistic explanations, if only to exclude them, before resorting to the miraculous. The miraculous ought only to be the last resort of a person with God-given rationality. Granted, the miraculous may be the first resort of the superstitious.

        1. If you believe in the resurrection as a miraculous event (maybe you think it’s a metaphor?) – and you believe the Shroud covered Christ – then it is entirely logical to conclude that the image could be the unexplainable by- product of the miraculous resurrection.

          Of course a naturalistic explanation is not precluded.

          But unlike you I would argue a miraculous creation is more likely, assuming the Shroud covered Christ (which is a big assumption – I am far from convinced, although I edge to the side of authenticity)

          If you can make the leap of faith to believe in resurrection, it’s but a very small hop to believe that it might have created the image.

    3. I do not preclude the Shroud image as miraculous. It is quite credible that it may be. You asked “Why the search for naturalistic explanations?” and I gave you the reason. In a God-created world, which would seem to be designed according to definite cause-and-effect principles, it is rational to search for naturalistic explanations if only to preclude them, before admitting the possibility of a miraculous explanation.

      Considering the tone of my many contributions to this blog, I find your suggestion that I might consider the resurrection as only a metaphor, quite disappointing. That is the position of the Jesus Seminar folk, and a position to which I do not subscribe, even though it is quite prevalent in this country [Google on “Lloyd Geering” and you will see what I mean]

  10. Jesus body did not decay it was in the tomb from Friday evening till Sunday dawn. According to experts who analyzed the Shroud image tells that the person who was wrapped in that Turin shroud was dead and also they did not find any signs that the body was decayed or decaying.

    Prior to Jesus death he told that resurrected bodies are similar to the Angels. According to Gospels we can read that Angels have bodies similar to humans. But Angels are quite different to humans. They can appear and also they can disappear. Angels also can sing, talk and carry things.

    Jesus never told that his resurrected body is same as the body he had prior to his death. Furthermore after the resurrection Jesus appeared and disappeared like Angels.
    Even Mary Magdalene and another two disciples couldn’t recognize resurrected Jesus. Mary recognized him from his voice but the other two disciples couldn’t recognize Jesus even hearing the voice of resurrected Jesus. Furthermore Jesus asked Mary not to touch his resurrected body as he has no being to the Father.

    Most probably, after being to the Father, resurrected Jesus ate. Jesus also has wounded scour marks on his resurrected body (Jesus asked Thomas to touch those) similar to the image on the TS. But resurrected body of Jesus is quite different to the body Jesus had prior to his death.

    As I mentioned previously no one knows about the resurrection process. If we assume Jesus resurrected bodily then we have to consider external energy sources (ie. earth quakes) to form the body image on the shroud. If assume Jesus resurrected like an angel then we can consider internally generated energy sources (ie. Radiation, X-Ray) to form the body image on the TS. As Gospel accounts supports both the bodily resurrection and resurrection with a body like Angels then we can consider both external (to body) and internal (from the body) energy sources to form the image. But based on the properties/aspects of the image on TS most probably an internal energy source is the reason to form an image on the TS.

    1. Sorry, but your words are similar to tautologies.


      Am I wrong in my remark?
      — — —
      I think we have to remain anchored to the reality
      of what we observe (or we can observe using appropriate tools!).
      Indeed …
      Where are the real connections between the observations and
      interesting theological speculations (… that, at the time,
      did not seem yet to have secure foundations in scientific reality)?

      I think the fact that we can see is the one that counts for the purposes
      of scientific discourse. If we pass to the religious front, then we have
      to rely on to visions (for example: Emmerich, Neumann, Valtorta, etc …) and
      the alleged actions of Our Lord Jesus himself. … (or we should pay more
      attention to what is proposed to us …).

      I have read that the
      > “Poem Of The Man-God” was put on the Index of Forbidden Books
      in 1959 3, being described in L’Osservatore Romano as
      “a badly fictionalized life of Christ”…

      But these are still other types of problems …
      or quarrels …
      See also:
      >”Poem of the Man-God, a multi-volume work of prose
      written by Maria Valtorta, purports to be a factual account
      of the life of Christ as revealed by Jesus himself.
      >Interest in the work grew after one of the alleged seers
      from Medjugorje claimed that the
      Virgin Mary okayed the reading of the book …
      — —
      But, here, (in my opinion) I get myself into a fix
      (= a very difficult situation)…
      — —
      I can add a “similar story” about
      the analyses on a particular material
      (and I never received an answer [on that argument]
      from the italian review “Miracoli”, at which
      I did send a message [in the past]):

      >Here is a translation of what Mirjana said,
      in response to a specific question asked by a member of audience:
      >>Yes, the parchment exists, you heard well: it is a parchment
      in which all the ten secrets are written. For now, only I can read
      what is really written on it. I don’t have to hide it in secret places,
      because only I can see what is really written on it.
      >>Once I showed that parchment to a cousin and to a girlfriend of mine,
      at the same time, and they couldn’t see the same thing.
      >>One saw a prayer and the other saw a sort of letter
      where someone was asking for help.


      — — —
      An unsolved enigma.

      >It is made of a material that can not be described.
      >It seems to paper, but it is not paper.
      >It seems cloth but is not cloth. It is visible.
      >You can touch but can not see the writing …

      René Laurentin,
      Le apparizioni di Medjugorje continuano. Proroga di misericordia per un mondo in pericolo?, Queriniana, Brescia, 1986, p. 33.
      English edition:
      Apparitions at Medjugorje Prolonged: A Merciful Delay for a World in Danger,
      Riehle Foundation, 1987

      Why, for example, not deliver it to the Vatican,
      so that this magical material is analyzed by specialized laboratories?
      Could be the parchment in danger?

      — — —
      But get to add to the enigma of the Shroud still other puzzles,
      it does not seem a good way to solve them.
      So, excuse me for this curious fanciful attempt…

  11. Is it possible that the image is formed not from something exterior contacting the linen but from something drawing internal material out of the linen like a vacuum? The best way I can describe it ( with my limited scientific knowledge) would be to compare it to a child sucking on a ice pop (frozen coloured sugar water). As the child sucks on the ice pop the food dye and sugar is drawn to the point of contact. Soon the top of the ice pop holds all the colour and the base is pale ice.

    Could the Shroud image likewise have been created by starches in the linen being drawn to the surface? This would assume a resurrection process currently outside our understanding, though I might liken it to the effect of a black hole caused by a collapsing star.

    Fantastical speculation, agreed. But I’m just trying to think outside the box in case it might trigger further useful speculation.

    1. Very interesting.
      The sticking point appears to remain
      the textile proof for what has been speculated.

      >… like a vacuum …
      Then …with vacuum UV (…as in Di Lazzaro’s hypothesis)… ?

      Excuse me for this intervention.
      But I would like to read something a bit “more precise” ..
      — —
      Then you can start with the:
      >… starches in the linen being drawn to the surface …

      In other words: we have to observe in a more careful manner
      the material involved in BIF (for example…using the adequate
      AFM techniques or using the AFM-Raman analyses) in order
      “to certify” the results (…probably from coming the Resurrection!?!?)
      obtained on linen …!

      In any case the “certification of Resurrection”
      is certainly a very ambitious goal!

    2. I suppose it needn’t even be a vacuum created by suction, it could also be a natural leaching effect. Perhaps something on the body drew the starches out of the linen (as opposed to imparting them on top the linen) – like salt draws moisture. This might include a leaching agent that did not require direct contact. A reverse Maillard reaction?

      Obviously a subject which is not my forte, but food for thought perhaps.

  12. The noted Shroud chemist Raymond Rogers, had noted that if the linen was processed according to the known ancient method, (recorded by Pliny and others) then after retting the flax in fermentation ponds, the resulting hanks of linen fibres would be exposed on rails to bleach in the sun. Evaporation would bring the starches to the surface of the fibres. Rogers considered that the image resided on this superficial layer of starch. He was able to remove the coloration of an imaged fibre by reducing it with diimide exposing the undamaged fibre beneath. The general consensus seems to be that the coloration is due to an oxidation process. During medieval times, the processing method changed. After further processing eliminating the starches, it was then common in Flanders for instance, to bleach the finished cloth by spreading it out in the fields there. It is one argument that supports a claim that the cloth is of ancient manufacture.

  13. However, Heller and Adler, who specifically tested the Shroud for starch, found none.

    (MAILLARD REACTION) MAY EXPLAIN THE IMAGE FORMATION” Raymond N. Rogers & Anna Arnoldi, 2003, This article originally appeared in Melanoidins vol. 4, Ames J.M. ed., Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, Luxembourg, 2003, pp.106-113.

    “Observations of weave density and lignin content of the shroud fibres (Rogers, 2001) indicate a very mild bleaching technique in agreement with the methods described by Pliny the Elder (77). The same technology was in use, with some minor differences, until after the last crusade in 1291 (Hochberg, 1980). Linen was spun by hand on a spindle whorl. When the spindle was full, the spinner made a hank of thread. Each hank of thread was bleached separately, and each was a little different. Different parts of the same thread in the shroud’s weave show slightly different colours, like a variegated yarn. The warp thread was protected with starch during the weaving process, making the cloth stiff. The final cloth was washed in a solution made from Saponaria officinalis. Saponaria produces four glycosidic saponins, and all hydrolyse to produce sugar chains. (Ya Chirva et al., 1969) The following carbohydrates were identified in those chains: galactose, glucose, arabinose, xylose, fucose, rhamnose, and glucuronic acid.”

    “The presence of starch, in particular amilose, on the shroud was confirmed by the fact that during testing for sulfoproteins in blood areas with an iodine-azide reagent (which bubbles vigorously when sulfur is present), a reddish background was formed. Image colour does not appear under the bloodstains when they are removed with a proteolytic enzyme. Whatever process produced the image, colour must have occurred after the blood flowed onto (or was painted onto) the cloth, and the image-producing process did not destroy the blood (Heller and Adler, 1981).”

    Note that the authors are asserting that several carbohydrates, including some sugars, were identified, and also amilose, which I take to be a starch. Authors also cite Heller & Adler regarding blood-stains. Searching on “starch” on web-site results in several other papers.

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