Foto: argus/ Maik Schröder mit freundlicher Genehmigung des Instituts für Mikrotechnik Mainz GmbH Quelle: DLR Göttingen Quelle: DLR Göttingen
Physik im Kontext
What are X-Rays
Röntgen's Discovery
History of Radiology
X-Ray Production
X-rays & Matter
Detection Issues
Detection Methods
Background: Fluorescence

Physics & the Detection of Medical X-Rays
X-Ray Production

Students can study the detection of x-rays without knowing how they are produced.  However, knowledge of the production processes will help them understand better the overall process and the way in which x-rays obtain their high energies.  Prior to studying the material covered in the Web pages listed below, students should have a knowledge of

  • Conservation of energy

  • Light as a form of energy

Messprinzip Produktion
The diagram at the top of the page provides labels in both English and German of the important components of an x-ray tube.  The rest of the page is in German.

Radiation Science
A set of 35 PowerPoint slides that review the basic ideas of x-ray production.  The approach is qualitative with very few numbers and no equations.  This set contains several links to the Web pages in the next link.

Production of X-rays
Several short lessons on the production of x-rays.  These lessons focus on the atomic processes and are primarily visual.  Much of it can be viewed without  a knowledge of English.  This sequence is part of a larger set of materials that look at all aspects of the physics of medical imaging.

Inside the X-Ray Tube
This animated sequence is part of the same course as the ones in the link above.  It provides some details on the process by which x-rays are produced in a modern x-ray tube but does not present the atomic level details.  These animation can be viewed with a knowledge of English.

Physics 2000:  X-Rays
Part of a set of materials for teaching students in approximately year nine of school about modern physics.  This site contains many animation, including one about the basic process of producing x-rays.

This site is aimed at dental technicians.  It contains basic information on x-rays and their production.  Then, it continues with dosage and safety issues.

Physik 2000 - Röntgenstrahlen
A German translation of Physics 2000, this material is p
art of a set of materials for teaching  students in approximately year nine of school about modern physics.  This site contains many animation, including one about the basic process of producing x-rays.

HyperPysics X-Ray Tube
Basic description of the x-ray tube with links to the types of x-rays.

Zwei Arten von Röntgenstrahlung
These short screens provide an introduction to characteristic rays and brehmstrahlung.  An analogy with skiing is presented for brehmstrahlung.  These screens are part of a larger set on x-rays.

Virtual Physics in Radiology Tutorials
The first three links give very short descriptions of x-ray production.  Most useful is the third link which is a diagram of a modern x-ray tube.  The animations load rather slowly and have limited value.

Bremstrahlung & K X-Ray Production
Two separate links to two animations.  Each is rather short and simple.  Shown together they can help the students understand the difference between the two types of x-ray production.  Because no words are on the screen, the presentation does not depend on language.

Electromagnetic Spectrum & X-Rays
A textual presentation of the propeties and production of x-rays.  These pages include appropriate equations.

This text-style description of x-ray production contains several graphics and some equations.  PDF.

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In cooperation with
Modern Miracle Medical Machines
Physics Education Research Group
Kansas State University