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Thread: Weird Newbie concept

  1. #1
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    Default Weird Newbie concept

    OK. I have some crazy ideas and I need your thoughts. I would like to put a laser inside a translucent vase and project on a the full 360 degree round surface, top to bottom. It would vary in diameter. The projected lines will be a function of real time processed video,perhaps from 2 sources.

    My reading makes me think this is a huge project. Note that I have never controlled a laser before. Usually I would go with baby steps. So I'm going to start with the questions I want answered most. Any comments would be helpful.

    1. Will a laser burn out if placed in a reasonably confined space like a 2 to 3 foot vase? How long can it run without heat issues. I'm aiming for 8 hrs or so of minimal usage.

    2. Size. They all look like black shoebox sized devices. Are there companies that make them small or large?

    3. Throw. I need a wide throw or some sort of device with a circular rotating mirror. Is this science fiction?

    4. Software. I'll need software that runs on a small headless computer. I'll need custom functions hopefully or an api. This is the big part. Anyone do this?

  2. #2
    Bradfo69's Avatar
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    Couple comments...
    .
    There was someone perhaps a year ago doing something similar with projecting inside a translucent globe or fishbowl or something. Don't know how you'll search for it but it sounds similar to what you're doing. Maybe someone else remembers the thread.
    .
    Throw... my first thought was an item called a "Discoscan" lens from Pangolin in the bottom of the vase or, perhaps 2 facing in opposite directions two lasers and two sets of scanners back to back. You'd need a big vase.
    http://www.pangolin.com/shop/discoscan-lens/
    .
    Heat - no, I don't suspect in a 2-3 foot round vase or globe that would be an issue since you're probably going to go with fairly low power. Is this RGB or a single color? You might look at the single mode diodes sold by DTR here on the forum.
    .
    People make laser projectors in all sorts of shapes and sizes and boxes. There are threads on here with putting them in old school lunch boxes and all sorts of things you can imagine.
    .
    Software and programming I'll leave to those who mess with this stuff more.
    .
    As a newbie, you are biting off a bit of a monster project but what sounds like a cool one. You have a lot to learn and absorb but, you've picked a fine time in the history of lasers, as things are getting smaller and cheaper and easier to run. 506 scanners, tiny diodes, discoscan, tiny mirror mounts and such are all going to be your friend in this.
    PM Sent...

  3. #3
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    Hi Jeff,

    This looks interesting.

    One laser or 2? 2 Mounted top and bottom, 1 mounted top or bottom?

    As Brad says the pangolin discoscan lens would give you good coverage, but if covering the whole surface there would be a lot of geometric correction needed and the beam quality would need to be good to keep the colours co-aligned at the more extreme angles (if not single colour). Bit resolution may be an issue also.

    Will the vase be on a plinth? If so could the laser be mounted in the plinth with the beams entering through a hole in the base, or if hung mounted in the "mouth" of the vase?

    For control there are various workflows I've put some links below.

    If you are looking at creating geometry and colour texture from video a node based system running to an etherdream DAC looks like the way to go. VVVV, Touch designer, MaxMSP etc.

    Good Luck!

    http://www.creativeapplications.net/...side-a-sphere/
    https://vimeo.com/59602627
    https://github.com/tebjan/VVVV.LaserDAC
    http://www.memo.tv/ofxilda/
    Last edited by MICKEY S UK; 11-16-2015 at 09:27.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for your thoughtful comments...

    Re # of lasers: I haven't decided I guess. I thought to mount inside, but i'd need 360 degrees by 270 degrees if it sat in the bottom.

    Re the pangolin discoscan: that is pretty cool and I will have to do geometric correction regardless. W/r to beam quality at extreme angles, I'll need to look up more about that.

    Re: the plinth, I think it'll have to have that if I go with the discoscan. That was not the original idea, but I'm still flexible.

    Re: Software, I thought I was going to have to do the coding myself, but maybe Max has something. I need to look into that too.

    /////////new questions

    It now occurs to me that the FDA might not be happy if I leave a laser on display unattended. I would like an RGB laser, so I need to figure out if I can be successful with a low power laser that doesn't need supervision. Currently, I don't know how strong I need to see through the porcelain vase and I don't know how

  5. #5
    Bradfo69's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffNielson View Post
    It now occurs to me that the FDA might not be happy if I leave a laser on display unattended.
    That depends. First of all, if this is something you are inventing to sell then yes, the FDA will need to be involved. You'll have to file a manufacturers product report and go through unGodly amounts of paperwork. If this is for your den at home as something cool to look at, no, of course not. If the glass is translucent, then is the laser light really escaping the globe or just displaying on the inside surface. If the actual laser beam isn't escaping the vase/globe, then you essentially have the same thing as a DVD burner and you can certainly leave that unattended. It's enclosed and no radiation escaping. I suspect similar to lumia that "some" light is escaping but it should certainly be eye safe. I suspect that depends on the coatings inside the vase.
    Last edited by Bradfo69; 11-17-2015 at 02:09.
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  6. #6
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    Galvonaut had an interesting thread going on this sort of thing, his plan was to project onto the inside surface of a dome, like a planetarium by bouncing the display from off a round mirrored ball. not quite that simple though IIRC.

    I think this is his main thread on the idea: http://www.photonlexicon.com/forums/...olens-question... no, there are only six replies, it went on quite a bit further than six.. I think.

    On google, go "sitehotonlexicon.com galvonaut dome"

    site: photonlexicon.com galvonaut dome
    ^^ remove the space
    Last edited by LaserCo; 11-17-2015 at 20:06.

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