View Full Version : Airport X-ray Problems w/Provia 100 or similar

chris jordan
26-Apr-2005, 09:18
This is Chris Jordan's wife posting for an update on whether anyone has recently had problems with sheet film being damaged in the airport x-ray machines, specifically Provia 100. Today in Seattle security refused to do a hand inspection by opening the film in a changing bag and he was forced to x-ray it. He is aware of the replies to his post on this issue last fall, and is asking for an update on whether anyone has experienced specific damage from this process.
Thank you,

David A. Goldfarb
26-Apr-2005, 11:16
I haven't had a problem myself with Provia 100F or any 100 speed film, or even any 400 speed film that's been X-rayed multiple times at the gate.

Marco Frigerio
26-Apr-2005, 11:20
Ciao Victoria (it's great to hear from you and not always from the same "old" Chris ;))))) )
I have always x rayed film whenever I came to Usa and I never had a single problem.
I x rayed Astia 100, Velvia 50 and 100, E100VS, Provia, I x rayed them from 2 to 4 times and no problem at all...
I've always been told by the airport security agent that the x ray machines for hand bag can x ray films up to 800 asa without causing damage...I have to agree with Matthew, the only problem can come if they see anything suspicious they can and they will turn up the strength of the machine, but usually that's not the case of films...

Un bacio dall'Italia!!

P.S.: see you soon!!!!!!!!

26-Apr-2005, 11:40
I travelled to and from the US from the UK with Provia 100 in 5x4 and 35mm in 2004 and had no problems with fogging from multiple xrays (4 from memory). I put all film together in a clear plastic carrier bag, and make sure it goes through the machine on it's own. This stops the film getting a big dose while the operator studies my camera gear on the monitor.

Lars Åke Vinberg
26-Apr-2005, 11:57
I have traveled extensively overseas in the last two years, always had to bring my 8x10 film - kinda hard to find in Chile or Australia. I always keep the film in lead bags, makes me feel better I guess. Anyway, never a problem with 100-speed Kodak or Fuji films (I never use faster film).

I do wish that the airports or X-ray manufacturers could declare their testing conditions and threshold values, instead of just blatantly declare "Will not damage film". Of course there is damage, the question is if it is measurable or not, and after how many x-rays.

Give Chris my best regards,

jose angel
26-Apr-2005, 12:27
Last week my TXT320 4x5" film was two times x-rayed (departure&return) in spanish airports. No marks. I read on the x-ray machine label "safe up to 1600 ASA films". I still have some film to develop. Also, APX400 x-rayed four times were perfect.

(If I push my TX400 roll film to 1600 ASA, would it be fogged? What about the Tmax 3200 at the real speed of 1000 ASA? Hmmm, next time I´ll ask to the machine´s policeman...)

Tom Diekwisch
26-Apr-2005, 22:51
I have had multiple X-ray damage to 100ASA film immediately after 911 when I didn't dare to ask for hand inspection. On the other hand, I found that security staff has extremely improved in terms of overall quality and courtesy, and I have usually gotten away with hand inspection. I would try to avoid X-ray machines at all costs.

Dominique Labrosse
27-Apr-2005, 01:02
My solution is to send my film ahead of myself by FedEx. For the moment they don't x-ray any packages. It makes going through airport security a breeze :-)


Mike Derr
28-Apr-2005, 17:54
I just traveled round trip between Boston and Washington, D.C., and requested hand inspections for Velvia 100F, Provia 400, and T-Max 400, even though the inspectors say film up to 800 is safe in the scanning machines. They honored the request and used a small tool to "examine" the film. I had no problems in development.