WO2006136803A2 - Lighting display with a surface obtained by the rotation of a flexible element - Google Patents

Lighting display with a surface obtained by the rotation of a flexible element Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2006136803A2
WO2006136803A2 PCT/GB2006/002243 GB2006002243W WO2006136803A2 WO 2006136803 A2 WO2006136803 A2 WO 2006136803A2 GB 2006002243 W GB2006002243 W GB 2006002243W WO 2006136803 A2 WO2006136803 A2 WO 2006136803A2
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WO
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Patent type
Prior art keywords
kinetic
apparatus according
element
kinetic element
light emitting
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Application number
PCT/GB2006/002243
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French (fr)
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WO2006136803A3 (en )
Inventor
Peter Wynne Willson
Paul A. Friedlander
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Wynne Willson Gottelier Limited
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09FDISPLAYING; ADVERTISING; SIGNS; LABELS OR NAME-PLATES; SEALS
    • G09F11/00Indicating arrangements for variable information in which the complete information is permanently attached to a movable support which brings it to the display position
    • G09F11/02Indicating arrangements for variable information in which the complete information is permanently attached to a movable support which brings it to the display position the display elements being secured to rotating members, e.g. drums, spindles
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F21LIGHTING
    • F21SNON-PORTABLE LIGHTING DEVICES; SYSTEMS THEREOF; VEHICLE LIGHTING DEVICES SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLE EXTERIORS
    • F21S10/00Lighting devices or systems producing a varying lighting effect
    • F21S10/06Lighting devices or systems producing a varying lighting effect flashing, e.g. with rotating reflector or light source
    • GPHYSICS
    • G09EDUCATION; CRYPTOGRAPHY; DISPLAY; ADVERTISING; SEALS
    • G09FDISPLAYING; ADVERTISING; SIGNS; LABELS OR NAME-PLATES; SEALS
    • G09F13/00Illuminated signs; Luminous advertising
    • G09F13/20Illuminated signs; Luminous advertising with luminescent surfaces or parts
    • G09F13/22Illuminated signs; Luminous advertising with luminescent surfaces or parts electroluminescent

Abstract

Lighting display apparatus has one or more flexible kinetic elements (7) mounted and driven so as to move in use to sweep out a path, each kinetic element (7) being invisible in use and free to bend. LED' s are provided along the kinetic elements; alternatively an image is projected on the kinetic elements such that the path swept out by the kinetic element is visible to the human eye as one or a plurality of apparent surfaces in space. Two or more kinetic elements (7-10) may be spaced in the viewing direction to permit the creation of complex three dimensional effects.

Description

LIGHTING DISPLAY

This invention relates to lighting displays for theatrical, environmental, entertainment advertising and a variety of other applications.

Aspects of the present invention relate to the provision of decorative lighting effects. These devices use light and its interaction with other physical objects to generate aesthetically pleasing visual effects. Typically, but not necessarily, such devices may have one or a plurality of light, and/or sound or ultrasound sources as part of their construction. In particular examples, the present invention relates to kinetic projection screens that are structures having at least one moving part onto which images or other light are projected, or the moving part itself is made of light and/or sound emitting material or lights and/or transducers are mounted inside, on the surface or attached to the moving part. A display is seen and/or heard on one or a plurality of apparent surfaces generated by the movement of said part. Fields of application are where aesthetic or decorative lighting and/or sound effects may enhance or add value. These include, but are not limited to special effects for use on stage, novelty or gift items, advertising signs or point of sale displays and other visual arts.

There is a field of inventions concerned with creating three-dimensional images using moving projection screens. In these inventions, a moving screen is swept rapidly through a volume in space while projecting images that change in synchronisation with the location of the screen upon which they are projected. It is arranged that the screen sweep through ail points within a certain volume so that any arbitrary shape or form maybe projected in three-dimensions within this volume. There are other inventions that use a screen rapidly rotating around a vertical axis to make a two dimensional image visible from all directions. All these inventions have had limited application as a result of air friction restricting the size of the displays.

There is a continuing demand for creative lighting effects. It is an object of aspects of the present invention to provide lighting display apparatus that can be used to provide a wide variety of new and exciting lighting effects. It is an object of certain aspects of the present invention to provide such apparatus that is relatively simple in construction; economical in manufacture; lightweight; or compact in transport. It is an object of certain aspects of the invention is to facilitate the creation luminous transparent three-dimensional forms that have decorative and aesthetic value.

A further object of certain aspects of this invention is that these forms may emit sound or ultrasound from one or multiple sources to create speech, music or sound effects in their own right or to enhance the visual displays.

A further object of certain aspects of this invention is that these decorative and aesthetic forms will appear to the viewer as if they were three-dimensional projections. A further object of certain aspects of this invention is to enhance the decorative and aesthetic value of pre-existing artwork when this artwork is projected onto the dynamic projection screen of this invention.

A further object of certain aspects of this invention is to permit that these decorative and aesthetic forms can be created on a larger scale than heretofore possible by the comparable art as referred to in the description of related arts.

A further object of this invention is to permit that these decorative and aesthetic forms can be put in place and removed quickly and easily to permit their use as part of a stage show.

There is known, is a system where an array of light emitting diodes (LEDs) - a wand - is mounted substantially parallel and at some distance from the axis of a shaft rotating at persistence of vision speed, when the appropriate signals are applied to the array an image appears, depending on the layout and orientation of the array, the image surface will be a cylinder, sphere or other. In a similar device the wand is mounted normal to the axis of rotation and produces a disc shaped image.

According to one aspect of the invention there is provided lighting display apparatus comprising one or more flexible kinetic elements mounted and driven so as to move in use to sweep out a path, each kinetic element being constrained at one or a plurality of discrete points only and otherwise be free to bend so that the shape adopted by the kinetic element in use is different from the shape of the kinetic element at rest and will be determined by the balance of mechanical and aerodynamic forces acting upon it; each kinetic element moving in use with sufficient speed that the element is substantially invisible, the apparatus further comprising light emitting means associated with each kinetic element such that the path swept out by the kinetic element is visible to the human eye as one or a plurality of apparent surfaces in space.

Preferably, each flexible kinetic element is elongate with a length that is substantially greater than the dimension or dimensions of the element orthogonal to the length.

Each elongate kinetic element may be constrained at one end only or may take the form of a closed loop, constrained at no more than two points around its circumference. Advantageously, each kinetic element is driven in rotation at at least one of said points by one or more electric motors, coaxially or eccentrically of the motor axis.

The resultant movement of the whole kinetic element or elements may follow the rotary movement of the said point or points so that said one or a plurality of apparent surfaces in space enclose a volume of rotation. Each elongate kinetic element may oscillate on rotation to produce harmonics or chaotic waveforms.

In one form of the invention, the light emitting means are spaced from each kinetic element, and each kinetic element being reflective and being in use illuminated with light falling on it of high intensity relative to light illuminating other surfaces in the field of view; preferably the light falling each kinetic element can have its brightness or colour modulated, said modulations preferably being synchronized with the movement of the said kinetic element. The light falling on each elongate kinetic element may be a projected image and the said surface in space serves as a screen; curved shapes of the said screen preferably producing distorted, single or multiple repeats of the projected images.

In another form of the invention, the light emitting means are provided on the kinetic element or elements, each kinetic element being made at least in part of light emitting material or having one or a plurality of light emitting devices. The brightness of the light emitting devices can be modulated, either in groups or individually and said modulations may be synchronized with the movement of the said flexible kinetic element or elements to produce a variety of effects, generating either graphic patterns, text of images. A kinetic display in accordance with the present invention may comprise at least a first motor, having a motor shaft, and optionally a means to control the speed of said first motor; first mounting means to which said first motor is attached and by which said first motor is supported from one or more points, either by means of wire rope or other suspension equipment or optionally a base to which said mounting means is placed on the floor; one or a plurality of kinetic elements, having first and second ends thereof, said first end or ends being coupled with said shaft of said first motor and moved by rotation thereof.

The kinetic element or plurality of elements is suitably formed so that it presents the minimum of resistance to movement through the air. Said kinetic element or plurality of elements maybe of very narrow section such as a thin rod, wire, cord, rope or any other narrow cylindrical or tubular form; alternately said kinetic element or plurality of elements maybe a laminar cut from sheet material oriented such that only the leading edge of said lamina shall face towards the direction of movement through the air; alternately said kinetic element or plurality of elements may have an aerofoil or other streamline cross section and be oriented such that only the leading edge of said aerofoil or other streamline cross section shall face towards the direction of movement through the air.

The second end(s) of the said kinetic element or plurality of elements may be left unattached, or may have weight(s) or blade(s) attached; alternatively, if more than a single second end is present, the said second ends maybe joined together. The said second end or ends alternatively may be attached to a second motor or attached to second fixing that maybe a secondary axle that is not driven by another motor, or some other means of attachment that allows for rotation, or alternatively the said secondary end or ends maybe attached by a means that does not allow rotation if and only if the first ends are attached to the first motor by such a means as to permit this form of secondary attachment. The kinetic element may also be in the form of a ring fixed at one point to said motor shaft and rotated about an axis passing through points substantially on the circumference of the said ring.

Light emitting devices may be mounted to a filament which may be a flexible cord, cable, tape, film, fabric or ribbon. The filament is attached to a rotating shaft at one end (or both ends,) the other end may be attached to another rotating shaft, a swivel, a weight, a fan blade or left loose. When the shaft is rotated at speed, the filament will describe figures in space, these will be simple, harmonic or chaotic. Each device will trace its path in space and when suitable signals are applied to the devices the figures may be illuminated with static, changing, or processing colours, or CG, graphic or video images may be displayed. A video camera in conjunction with image manipulation hard and software, trained on the filament can map the image of the filament in its current shape and modify the signal to the light emitting means to optimize the visual effects by continuous interaction.

A filament which may be a flexible cord, cable, tape, film, fabric or ribbon, (with or without light emitting means attached) is attached to a rotating shaft at one end (or both ends,) the other end may be attached to another rotating shaft, a swivel, a weight, a fan blade or left loose. When the shaft is rotated at speed, the filament will describe figures in space, these will be simple, harmonic or chaotic. One or more filaments could be suspended to form dynamic elements of a projection surface or screen.

A video camera in conjunction with image manipulation hard and software, trained on the filament and can map the image of the filament in its current shape. A video projector is also trained on to the filament. The image manipulation equipment can modify the signal output to the projector to optimize the visual effects by continuous interaction.

In another configuration, a single filament with attached light emitting means or group of filaments with attached light emitting means is shaken or made to oscillate (rather than rotated) the filaments may be free or loosely tethered at one or more points along their length, thus the light emitting means will describe paths through space that are chaotic but within controlled limits, and with suitable signals applied to the light emitting means, will display optical effects related to the speed of agitation.

A video camera in conjunction with image manipulation hard and software, trained on the display of filament(s) can map the image of the filament(s) in the current shape and modify the signal to the light emitting means to optimize the visual effects by continuous interaction.

In another aspect, the present invention consists in lighting display apparatus comprising a carrier mounted for rotation about an axis; at least two kinetic elements mounted on the carrier so as to move in use to sweep out a respective surface of revolution; the respective surfaces of revolution being spaced one from the other along a viewing direction; each kinetic element moving in use with sufficient speed that the element is substantially invisible, the apparatus further comprising light emitting means associated with each kinetic element such that the path swept out by each kinetic element is visible to the human eye as an apparent surfaces in space.

Certain arrangement s according to this aspect of the present invention provides for more than one, or a number of wands of LEDs or other light emitting means - suitable for direct viewing, to be mounted concentrically, either in line with each other or staggered around the axis, so that when the appropriate signals are applied to the light emitting means, multiple layers of images are produced. The images may be independent, related, transparent or alpha leveled, they may be fed by CGI, live or recorded video from one or more sources, or other, source material may be shot by cameras judiciously placed in relation to an object, to best exploit the display characteristics. In a similar device more than one or a number of wands is arranged normal to the axis of rotation, so that a stack of disc-shaped images is produced. This device may be constructed in the manner of a spiral staircase, with each wand representing a rung. The wands may be arranged radially or chordally.

A number of further variations and alternatives will now be briefly discussed.

In some of the configurations the light emitting means array can be replaced by an array of single or pixel group of photo-cells, which in conjunction with a long enough tubular 'snoot' on each, will capture a line scan as it rotates and can produce a 360 degree camera image. An image projector is mounted with the lens pointed vertically up or down with either: a mirror mounted at 450 to the optical axis, rotating at persistence of vision speed, sweeps the output around the room or cylindrical screen etc. Input to the projector is shot by a camera with the same mirror setup; or a substantially conical mirror, which may be a true cone, rotated parabolic cone, faceted cone etc., is mounted with the conic axis lying along the optical axis of the beam. A distorted image is reflected around the room or cylindrical screen etc. Input to the projector is shot by a camera with the same mirror set-up, (the camera set-up is known, by example for shooting the participants of a meeting, in this case a segment, showing the current speaker, of the distorted captured image is manipulated to appear normal when projected conventionally.)

An array of lasers, laser diodes or other light emitting means which produce essentially collimated beams, either naturally or in conjunction with focusing elements, this light emitting means 'wand' is mounted parallel to and as close as possible to the axis of rotation, the light emitting means are mounted so that the beams are substantially normal to the axis of rotation. If the device is mounted with the axis vertical then at rest the beams from the array will produce a vertical line of dots on the wall or screen. Rotating at persistence of vision speed, the beams will describe a stack of rings around the room. With appropriate signals to the light emitting means CG, graphic or video images will be projected in 360° . In a haze, a stack of discs will be visible.

The projection surface may be the walls of a room or suitable screen, for example a cylindrical screen, the viewer may be inside or outside the screen.

In another configuration the EBEs are mounted at an angle to the wand so that if say, the wand is mounted high or low in the room, the beams will not be normal to the wand, they will decline or incline, and produce a series of cones (instead of discs) when the wand rotates, thereby the projection on the walls will lower or higher than the wand.

In another configuration the EBEs are mounted so that their angle to the wand can be varied either as a parallel group, proportionally as a group, or individually, thus with proportional angling of the EBEs, the projection may be varied in size relative to the wand. Varying the angle of the EBEs artistically, in real time, while the wand rotates will cause the beams to produce geometric effects on the walls and in haze.

In other configurations of the devices above, the wands are fixed and the beams are directed onto a prism or mirror assembly with two or more facets, rotating about an axis substantially parallel to the wand. The reflected beams will repeatedly trace a 'quadrant' the angle of which will be governed by the number of facets and angle of presentation of reflector to beams. In a radial array: an array of lasers, laser diodes or other light emitting means which produce essentially collimated beams, either naturally or in conjunction with focusing elements, this light emitting means 'wand' is mounted radially, normal to the axis of rotation, or chordally or the array may describe an arc or flat spiral, and the light emitting meansare mounted so that the beams are substantially parallel to the axis of rotation. Rotating at persistence of vision speed the beams will describe a series of concentric rings on a screen and concentric cylinders in haze. Suitable signals to the EBEs will produce CG, graphic or video images on a screen. A rectangular or circular mask could be usefully positioned over part of the display to exclude the centre spot, the 'eye of the storm'.

In another configuration the light emitting meansare mounted so that their angle to the wand can be varied either as a parallel group, proportionally as a group, or individually, thus with proportional angling of the light emitting means, the projection may be varied in size relative to the wand. Varying the angle of the light emitting meansartistically, in real time, while the wand rotates will cause the beams to produce geometric effects on a screen and in haze. Thus for example nesting cones with variable angles can be traced. Varying the skew of the light emitting meanswill cause the beams to describe various geometric effects on a screen or in haze. In another layout, the geometry of the wand may be varied to affect the light emitting meansbeam distribution.

In another configuration a powerful light emitting means, for example a laser, could be directed through a hollow rotating shaft, to which is mounted a disc normal to the axis of rotation. The beam is diverted by deflectors on the disc, one at 45 degrees immediately above the hollow shaft which deflect the beam to a pair of deflectors near the perimeter of the disc. When the deflectors are all set at 45 degrees the beam will be orthogonal and parallel to the axis of rotation and will describe a cylinder when the shaft and disc rotate. When the angle of the perimeter deflectors is varied and or skewed, the beam will create geometric effects when the shaft and disc are rotated at speed. The perimeter deflectors may be mounted to high speed actuators such as galvanometers, with suitable signals to the galvos, another set of effects will be produced. In some of these systems, the wands may be so arranged that when the shaft or disc rotates, the images produced by the arrays of light emitting means, appear to intersect each other.

Two or more rotating devices may be so positioned and synchronized that the paths or planes of their wands intersect, creating interesting intersecting images.

In a known device, the input ferrule end of a 'Mare's Tail' of optical fibers is offered to the output of a conventional light source equipped with various optical effects such as colour change. The points of the fibers forming the loose end of the mare's tail thus change colour in a pleasing manner.

Here, the input ferrule end of a 'Mare's Tail' of optical fibers is offered to the output of a video projector. The coupling may be with or without the objective lens of the projector. An exploded version of the object/image in the projector will be displayed on the virtual plane created by the points of the fibers forming the loose end of the mare's tail.

In another configuration the loose ends of the mare's tail are attached to a rigid or flexible substrate and organized or fixed into points describing a logo, graphic, sign or other display. Suitable input signals to the projector will have a corresponding effect on the display points. In another configuration a bundle of optical fibers is gathered in a compact ferrule at the input end which is offered to a video projector output before the objective lens, the other end of the bundle is loosely gathered in a slack ferrule and presented to an objective lens. When external forces are applied to the loose fibers or slack ferrule - twisting, splaying, gathering etc., the image displayed by the objective lens will react accordingly.

In another configuration a bundle of optical fibers is gathered in compact ferrules at each end the 'lay' of the fibers is deliberately random so that a coherent image input at one end is rendered incoherent at the other, creating a pleasing display when projected. If a video camera is offered to the incoherent output, the collected image can be compared by image processing equipment, to the original (coherent) image fed to the projector, thus the random lay fiber bundle may be 'calibrated' and mapped for use when devising further effects. Embodiments of the invention will now be described by way of example and with reference to the drawing in which:

FIG. 1 is a drawing of the first embodiment of a dynamic projection screen according to the present invention. FIG. 2 is a drawing of the second embodiment of a dynamic projection screen according to the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a drawing of the third embodiment of a dynamic projection screen according to the present invention.

FIG. 4 is an enlargement of a detail of the means of attachment of the elongate element in the third embodiment of a dynamic projection screen according to the present invention.

FIG. 5 is a diagrammatic representation of a fourth embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 6 is a diagrammatic representation of a fourth embodiment of the present invention.

A number of embodiments of a dynamic projection screen according to the present invention will now be described. Where appropriate, the same reference numerals are used to denote the same parts in separate embodiments where those parts are common to more than one of the embodiments. A first embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIG. 1. The invention comprises an electric motor 1 attached to a mounting means 3. A means of supporting said mounting is provided by two steel wire ropes 4 and 5. The shaft of said motor 2 carries a coupling 6 fixed securely to the said motor shaft. A single kinetic element 7 in the form of a ring, said ring to be a strip of flat material or having an aerofoil or other streamline cross section. The kinetic element is made from a lightweight strong material or composite. The ring shall be securely fixed to the said coupling.

When the kinetic element is set rotating at sufficient speed, its form cannot be perceived, instead the human eyes sees the surface of a sphere swept out by the motion of the kinetic element. This sphere formed by the rapid movement of the kinetic element is the dynamic projection screen. When the dynamic projection screen is lit in an otherwise substantially dark space, it takes on the visual appearance of a three-dimensional projection. Consider for example a projector illuminating the entire dynamic projection screen and the dynamic projection screen substantially in the centre of the projector beam. The part of the screen close to the projector and substantially orthogonal to the light projected upon it will display a portion of the image with little distortion. That part of the dynamic projection screen far from the projector will display a second instance of the same portion of the image. That part of the projector beam falling at a substantially non-orthogonal angle will display a distorted image. The combined effect of the projector beam falling on the various parts of the dynamic projection screen creates the decorative and aesthetic forms that will appear to the viewer as if they were three-dimensional projections.

In the rest position, the kinetic element 7 - as a result of the flexibility of the material from which the ring is constructed - will adopt an elliptical form, extended downwardly vertically. As the ring starts to rotate, it will extend in the horizontal direction. Depending upon the speed of rotation, the ring may be circular, elliptical with the major axis vertical or elliptical with the major axis horizontal.

The subject matter and means to project images are very well known to those skilled in this art and do not require detailed discussion here, but to illustrate the functionality of the invention, consider the following examples of a subject. Example one: a simple graphic image comprised of parallel lines. The lines will become distorted taking on a curvilinear geometry that is pleasing to the eye. Example two: a portrait, the face if placed centrally will remain recognizable with two instances of the face visible and the surrounding region of the image will be distorted taking on a surreal quality. To any one familiar with the arts, it will be clear that the kinetic element can be in a variety of forms, each one of which will result in a different decorative effect. In general, any volume of rotation formed by an kinetic element rotating at sufficient speed is a dynamic projection screen. For example, the shaft of the motor maybe extended and a group of concentric spheres maybe formed by differently sized rings all rotating around the same axis. Two or more projectors may be focussed on different levels of the virtual screens to produce effects with added visual depth. A video camera in conjunction with pattern recognition and image manipulation hard and software, may be trained on the element and can map the image of the element in its current shape. The image manipulation equipment can modify the signal output to the video projector which is trained on the element to optimize the visual effects by continuous interaction.

A second embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIG. 2. The invention comprises an electric motor 1 attached to a mounting means 3. The shaft of said motor 2 carries a coupling 6 fixed securely to the said motor shaft. Four kinetic element 7, 8, 9, 10 in the form of two orthogonal rings, said rings to be a strip of flat material or having an aerofoil or other streamline cross section. The kinetic elements are made from a lightweight strong material or composite. The first ends of said elements shall be securely attached to the said coupling. The second ends of said elements shall be co-joined and means provided for a shaft 12 to pass through said joining. The co-joined ends of the kinetic elements are permitted to travel vertically on the shaft 12 to accommodate changes in shape of the kinetic elements at varying speeds of rotation. An outer support ring 11 is suspended by two steel wire ropes 4 and 5. The said motor mounting means are attached to the outer support ring at the top and the said non-rotating shaft attached to the said outer support ring at the bottom. There are further provided a circular stage 13 and means for the said non-rotating shaft to be attached to the said coupling via a ball-race or other means that allows free rotation.

When the kinetic elements are set rotating sufficiently fast, a dynamic projection screen as described in the first embodiment is formed. The second embodiment provides a means for a non-rotating subject or plurality of subjects to be placed inside the dynamic projection screen. Typically, but not necessarily, this can be a performing artist. By adjusting the brightness/'alpha- levels'/transparency of the different projection or light emitting source virtual surfaces, the object or artist inside the display may be made to appear, disappear or be integrated with the display.

A third embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIG. 3 and a detail of the third embodiment is shown in FIG. 4. The invention comprises an electric motor 1 attached to a mounting means 3. A means of supporting said mounting by two steel wire ropes 4 and 5. The shaft of said motor 2 and an extended coupling 15 fixed securely to the said motor shaft. A ball race 18 and a counter weight 16 are mounted on the said extended coupling. A flexible kinetic element 7 typically made from nylon or polyester cord. The first end of the said flexible kinetic element passes through the said ball race and is secured by fixing 17. The second end of said flexible kinetic element is weighted down with weight 14. When set in motion, the said flexible kinetic element moves in a variety of ways depending on its speed, length, quality and weight of material from which it is made and the amount of offset in the said extended coupling. The movements of the said flexible kinetic element can be broadly divided into harmonic forms characterised by distinct nodes and antinodes or chaotic forms that do not settle into a single pattern. Together these said forms of movement form a plurality of dynamic projection screens that can be produced by the third embodiment when the said flexible kinetic element is moving sufficiently fast that the human eye perceives the surface swept out in space behind the said flexible kinetic element. It should be noted that the chaotic forms of movement of the third embodiment are not volumes of rotation. All of these various types of movement described herein have decorative and aesthetic value when suitably illuminated.

In certain forms of this invention, instead of a projector or other light emitting means spaced form the flexible kinetic elements, light emitting means are provided on the kinetic elements themselves.

To summarise, one or a plurality of kinetic elements is set in motion, so that one or a plurality of paths is swept out. The kinetic elements shall be flexible so that the forms adopted are one or more curved surfaces created by the forces acting upon them. The motion shall be of sufficient speed that the kinetic elements cannot be seen clearly but the paths swept out by the motion shall create the visual appearance of apparent surfaces. Images maybe projected onto these apparent surfaces by one or a plurality of projectors. The kinetic elements may emit light or have one or a plurality of lights source mounted in or on them. The light sources may be individually addressable and the signals may be synchronised with the rotation of the kinetic elements. Said kinetic elements are designed so that they present the minimum of resistance to movement, having an aerodynamic form or other design such that they move with low air friction, allowing the kinetic projection screen to be large. The kinetic elements may emit sound or have one or a plurality of transducer, sound or ultrasound sources mounted in or on them, the transducers may be individually addressable and the signals may be synchronised with the rotation of the kinetic elements.

Turning now to Figure 5, there is shown lighting display apparatus comprising a carrier in the form of two circular structures 50, which are mounted in any convenient manner for driven rotation together about the common axis. Two or more wands extend in parallel between the circular structures 50 so as to each to describe a cylindrical surface of revolution. The surfaces of revolution are coaxial and spaced radially; that is say they are spaced in the intended viewing direction. Light emitting means are provided in one arrangement as a plurality of light emitting devices such as LED's spaced along the length of each wand. Typically, there will be a large number of closely spaced devices providing pixels which at the intended viewing distance are contiguous. Typically, there may be 100, 500 or more devices on each wand. The drive signals provided to the light emitting means may be synchronised with the rotation of the apparatus.

Alternatively, separate light emitting means may be provided in the form of one or more projectors or other forms of illumination. Again, the drive signals provided to the light emitting means may be synchronised with the rotation of the apparatus.

Complex and visually intriguing effects may be created with this embodiment of the invention. Since there are two or more surfaces of revolution each serving as a virtual projection or display surface, complex three-dimensional forms may be displayed. Since each kinetic element is essentially invisible when not illuminated, three dimensional representations of objects may appear to appear or disappear within other three dimensional representations.

Turning now to Figure 6, there is illustrated a further embodiment in which a plurality of wands 60 are mounted to project radially from a shaft 62 which can be driven in rotation about its axis. The wands are preferably staggered (in the manner of a spiral staircase) so that one wand does not obscure the next when viewed in a viewing direction along or parallel with the axis of the shaft 62. The wands 60 can be illuminated in broadly the same manner as described with the previous embodiment. The surfaces of revolution are here discs spaced in the axial or viewing direction. A further variety of interesting three dimensional lighting effects can be created with this embodiment. The light emitting means in apparatus according to the various aspects of this invention may be monochrome, multi-coloured, pixilated in groups, in single or multiple linear arrays, colour-changing, or frequency changing, in and out of the visible EM spectrum. The output of the light emitting means may be directional, multidirectional, omni-directional or diffuse. The light emitting means may be used with individual or group collectors, reflectors, lenses, prisms or diffusers; with lenticular, holographic, prismatic or coloured filters; with tubular 'top hats' or 'snoots' to mask all but the end view of the light emitting means.

In special cases, the light emitting means may be strips or panels of TFT, LCD, STN, plasma or any similar display medium. The input signal to the light emitting means may be computer generated

CG, programmed via a digital or analog protocol, raw or manipulated video, live or recorded, coloured or monochrome. The signals may be so manipulated that the output from the light emitting means can be made to appear cohesive, coherent, seamlessly 'stitched' between layers or otherwise. The light emitting means may be controlled individually, in pixels, in groups, in lines or by applying other filters. The degree of collimation or divergence of individual, groups or the whole array of light emitting means may be varied so that output of the individual elements of the display which may appear as a chain of dots when they strike a screen or wall, may be adjusted by varying the mounting angle of the light emitting means or by flexing the wand to which they are mounted so that output of the individual elements of the display may be contiguous or spread apart when they strike a screen or wall.

Aspects of the various described embodiments may be combined with each other in new arrangements. Thus the flexible, straight or arcuate flexible elements of Figures 1 to 4 may be substituted for the rigid elements of Figure 5 and 6. Any of the described illumination schemes may be used with any of the described display apparatus.

Claims

1. Lighting display apparatus comprising one or more flexible kinetic elements mounted and driven so as to move in use to sweep out a path, each kinetic element being constrained at one or a plurality of discrete points only and otherwise be free to bend so that the shape adopted by the kinetic element in use is different from the shape of the kinetic element at rest and will be determined by the balance of mechanical and aerodynamic forces acting upon it; each kinetic element moving in use with sufficient speed that the element is substantially invisible, the apparatus further comprising light emitting means associated with each kinetic element such that the path swept out by the kinetic element is visible to the human eye as one or a plurality of apparent surfaces in space.
2. Apparatus according to Claim 1 , wherein each flexible kinetic element is elongate with a length that is substantially greater than the dimension or dimensions of the element orthogonal to the length.
3. Apparatus according to Claim 2, wherein each elongate kinetic element is constrained at one end only.
4. Apparatus according to Claim 2, wherein each elongate kinetic element takes the form of a closed loop, constrained at no more than two points around its circumference.
5. Apparatus according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein each kinetic element is driven in rotation at at least one of said points by one or more electric motors, coaxially or eccentrically of the motor axis.
6. Apparatus according to Claim 5, wherein the resultant movement of the whole kinetic element or elements follows the rotary movement of the said point or points so that said one or a plurality of apparent surfaces in space enclose a volume of rotation.
7. Apparatus according to Claim 5, wherein each elongate kinetic element oscillates on rotation to produce harmonics or chaotic waveforms.
8. Apparatus according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the light emitting means are spaced from each kinetic element, and each kinetic element being reflective and being in use illuminated with light falling on it of high intensity relative to light illuminating other surfaces in the field of view.
9. Apparatus according to Claim 8, wherein the light falling each kinetic element can have its brightness or colour modulated, said modulations preferably being synchronized with the movement of the said kinetic element.
10. Apparatus according to Claim 8 or Claim 9, wherein the light falling on each elongate kinetic element is a projected image and the said surface in space serves as a screen; curved shapes of the said screen preferably producing distorted, single or multiple repeats of the projected images.
11. Apparatus according to any one of Claims 1 to 7, wherein the light emitting means are provided on the kinetic element or elements.
12. Apparatus according to Claim 11 each kinetic element is made at least in part of light emitting material.
13. Apparatus according to Claim 11 , wherein each kinetic element has one or a plurality of light emitting devices.
14. Apparatus according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the light emitting means comprises a multiplicity of light emitting devices, preferably light emitting diodes.
15. Apparatus according to Claim 14, wherein the brightness of the light emitting devices can be modulated, either in groups or individually and said modulations may be synchronized with the movement of the said flexible kinetic element or elements to produce a variety of effects, generating either graphic patterns, text of images.
16. Apparatus according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein sonic or ultrasonic transducers form or are incorporated on or into the kinetic elements.
17. Apparatus according to Claim 16, wherein the sonic or ultrasonic transducers can be modulated either in groups or individually and said modulations may be synchronized with the movement of the said flexible kinetic element or elements to produce a variety of effects.
18. Lighting display apparatus comprising a carrier mounted for rotation about an axis; at least two kinetic elements mounted on the carrier so as to move in use to sweep out a respective surface of revolution; the respective surfaces of revolution being spaced one from the other along a viewing direction; each kinetic element moving in use with sufficient speed that the element is substantially invisible, the apparatus further comprising light emitting means associated with each kinetic element such that the path swept out by each kinetic element is visible to the human eye as an apparent surfaces in space.
19. Apparatus according to Claim 18, each kinetic element being constrained at one or a plurality of discrete points only and otherwise be free to bend so that the shape adopted by the kinetic element in use is different from the shape of the kinetic element at rest and will be determined by the balance of mechanical and aerodynamic forces acting upon it.
20. Apparatus according to Claim 18 or Claim 19, wherein each kinetic element is elongate with a length that is substantially greater than the dimension or dimensions of the element orthogonal to the length.
21. Apparatus according to Claim 20, wherein each elongate element is straight or arcuate.
22. Apparatus according to any one of Claims 18 to 21 , wherein the kinetic elements are offset one form the other in a direction orthogonal to the viewing direction.
23. Apparatus according to any one Claims 18 to 22, wherein the light emitting means are spaced from each kinetic element, and each kinetic element being reflective and being in use illuminated with light falling on it of high intensity relative to light illuminating other surfaces in the field of view.
24. Apparatus according to Claim 23, wherein the light falling each kinetic element can have its brightness or colour modulated, said modulations preferably being synchronized with the movement of the said kinetic element.
25. Apparatus according to Claim 23 or Claim 24, wherein the light falling on each kinetic element is a projected image.
26. Apparatus according to any one of Claims 18 to 25, wherein the light emitting means are provided on the kinetic element or elements.
27. Apparatus according to Claim 26, wherein each kinetic element is made at least in part of light emitting material.
28. Apparatus according to Claim 26, wherein each kinetic element has one or a plurality of light emitting devices.
29. Apparatus according to any one of Claims 18 to 28, wherein the light emitting means comprises a multiplicity of light emitting devices, preferably light emitting diodes.
30. Apparatus according to Claim 29, wherein the brightness of the light emitting devices can be modulated, either in groups or individually and said modulations may be synchronized with the movement of the said flexible kinetic element or elements to produce a variety of effects, generating either graphic patterns, text of images.
31. Apparatus according to any one of Claims 18 to 30, wherein sonic or ultrasonic transducers form or are incorporated on or into the kinetic elements.
32. Apparatus according to Claim 31 , wherein the sonic or ultrasonic transducers can be modulated either in groups or individually and said modulations may be synchronized with the movement of the said flexible kinetic element or elements to produce a variety of effects.
PCT/GB2006/002243 2005-06-20 2006-06-20 Lighting display with a surface obtained by the rotation of a flexible element WO2006136803A3 (en)

Priority Applications (4)

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GB0512549.7 2005-06-20
GB0512549A GB0512549D0 (en) 2005-06-20 2005-06-20 Light beam processing
GB0606396.0 2006-03-30
GB0606396A GB0606396D0 (en) 2005-06-20 2006-03-30 Light Beam Processing

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US20030174494A1 (en) * 2002-03-14 2003-09-18 Mark Chernick Illuminated device containing spinning electroluminescent wire
US20040004828A1 (en) * 2002-07-05 2004-01-08 Mark Chernick Spinning illuminated novelty device with syncronized light sources
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US3477157A (en) * 1967-12-14 1969-11-11 Johan Bjorksten Advertising display
FR2653857A1 (en) * 1989-10-26 1991-05-03 Perrot Patrice Method and device for creating variable luminous effects
US5097394A (en) * 1991-03-11 1992-03-17 Friedlander Paul A Dynamic light sculpture
GB2331174A (en) * 1998-10-03 1999-05-12 Bissell Thomas James Durell Rotary display
WO2001041106A1 (en) * 1999-12-03 2001-06-07 Danczkay Peter Adjustable 3d multicolor wave generator system
US20030174494A1 (en) * 2002-03-14 2003-09-18 Mark Chernick Illuminated device containing spinning electroluminescent wire
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