Feeds

New Van Gogh pic discovered using German atom-smasher

Mysterious 'Doris' lurks beneath 'Patch of Grass'

Intelligent flash storage arrays

There may be some readers out there who aren't entirely clear just what synchrotrons - enormous, kilometre-wide magnetic doughnuts used to thrash electrons within an inch of their lives - are actually for. Today, the news furnishes us with a partial answer - you can use a synchrotron to see old paintings hidden beneath other paintings.

The previously unknown Van Gogh portrait beneath 'Patch of Grass'

'Patch of Grass' - or actually just a
particularly vigorous bit of Tippex-ing?

This has now been conclusively demonstrated by boffins from Belgium and the Netherlands, who have used an immense German synchrotron to peer beneath the surface of the noted Van Gogh painting "Patch of Grass". By lighting the pic up with special extra-lively X-rays from "radiation source DORIS at Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron DESY in Hamburg", the spyray art-fancying brainboxes were able to expose a portrait of an unknown woman.

It isn't known what Van Gogh called the underlying painting, or indeed who it depicted, but we suggest that the subject might be codenamed "Doris" after the machinery which brought her to public view after a century of obscurity.

According to the Technical University of Delft, art historian Dr Joris Dik believes that the synchrotron X-ray demo will "pave the way for research into many other concealed paintings". We here on the Reg crypto-pic spyray desk expect to see a strong comeback of some sort from rival T-ray art-sniffer boffins, angered by the new school of synchrotron pic-probe upstarts.

Meanwhile there will no doubt be some grumblers who feel that, while an unknown Van Gogh picture is very nice, it may not quite provide total justification for the costs of building and running synchrotrons. The expenses of the UK's "Diamond" particle-punisher, and similar "big science" projects, have lately been blamed for a funding crisis in British physics and astronomy which has seen swarms of top boffins lose their jobs. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.