In our last post we discussed the goal and methods around capturing the birefringence found in frozen soap bubbles. The good news is that we established a solid method for capturing birefringence, but so far have yet to see any real noticeable birefringence on soap bubbles.
Along the way we did capture some amazing photos of soap bubbles in several different states of frozen, and finally just shot some images of just ice crystals forming. We have some videos of the growth of crystals which we might post later.
In order to capture images such as these, you need to polarizing sheets. One covers your light source (flash, led, etc), the other over your camera. It is important that the polarizing sheet is the last optical element before the subject you wish to photograph.
First, more photos of "ice crystals we really wished showed birefringence ". We have a few theories about why this doesn't work (including: thin film from glycerine causing scatter, too many layers of ice, etc). At this point it's still unknown, any comments welcomed! The good news is that the soap is showing it's lovely colors!
Well, that sure was neat, but we didn't really get the birefringence in water crystals we wanted. So it was time to just try old fashioned ice crystals and liquid nitrogen. The results where spectacular:
Here's where it got interesting. By rotating the polarizing film different parts of the crystals would show birefringence based on the changing angles interacting with each other.