kinetic Art

Manipuable Exhibition: Felipe Pantone

See the amazing works of Felipe Pantone:

More about the recent exhibtion at: Gallery COMMON

Explore some of the other physics based art in my collection: physicsfun art

Manipulable Exhibition: an incredible interactive souvenir from artist Felipe Pantone’s recent solo exhibition at @gallerycommon entitled “Manipulable”. Pantone takes op art to the next level- mixing physics and the psychophysics of vision within forms that invite physical interactivity, astounding the senses and giving new insights to our perception. I’m eternally grateful to Galley COMMON for sending me this opening day souvenir for my collection.

Double Pendulum with Glow Tracer Screen

Get a similar super nice, affordable, and fun to assemble kit here:
From KiwiCo: BUY NOW: Glow Pendulum Kit

Get amazing quatilty science kits delievered to your home- this glow pendulum is part of the Tinker Crate subscription. 
From KiwiCo: LEARN MORETinker Crate Subscription


Double Pendulum with Glow Tracer Screen: A UV diode traces the intricate path of the pendulum on to a phosphorescent screen, revealing its chaotic motion. It’s amazing that such complex motion can arise from a simple assembly of two pendulums, one attached to the end of the other. Chaotic motion, such as that observed here, is characterized by extreme sensitivity to initial starting conditions, tiny differences in how the system is released leads to dramatically different outcomes each time. 

Mercury Fountain of Calder

This fountain is on display here:

Visit: Fundació Joan Miró

Here is a discription of the artwork by the artist Calder himself.

See my other posts: cautious fun with mercury

Mercury Fountain: Some amazing physics fun from my January holiday in Barcelona- a fountain of flowing metal with 150 liters of mercury filling a two meter in diameter reflecting pool. This fountain is kinetic art created for the 1937 World’s Fair in Paris by the famous artist of mobiles, Alexander Calder, and features aspects of his trademark design. Given the density of mercury at 13.5 g/ml, the liquid in the fountain weighs in at roughly 2000 kg (4500 lbs), and at the bottom of the fountain Calder utilizes the small but massive droplets to impact a paddle which keeps the mobile components in motion. This work also has important historical significance as a political statement against injustice. Note that the top of the mobile includes, in cursive, Almaden, in remembrance of the mercury mining town that suffered under Franko’s siege during the Spanish Civil War in 1936. The fountain now sits behind thick sealed glass on display in the Joan Miró Foundation museum atop Montjuïc in Barcelona.

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Hexacon and Sphericon Rollers

Get these and other amazing developable rollers here:

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Hexacon and Sphericon Rollers

Hexacon Roller: beautiful 3D printed versions of a recent mathematical discovery of new developable rollers (objects that roll where every point on the roller’s surface comes into contact with the plane upon which it rolls). Similar to the sphericon (based on a square) the hexacon rolls in a straight line with a peculiar wobble motion but has a hexagonal cross section (swipe to see video loop of each in motion). The hexacon (2019) and sphericon (1980) are two of a family of such rollers called polycons discovered by David Hirsch, and described in a paper by Hirsch and Seaton published in 2020. 

Maxwell's Dynamical Top: Historical Replica

Get this accurate and beautiful 1/2 scale replica here:

From Machined Marvels: BUY NOW: Maxwell's Dynamical Top

Maxwell’s Dynamical Top: one of my favorite demonstrations of the strange properties of rotating bodies- shown here with a 1/2 scale but exacting replica of the famous “Dynamical Top” created and demonstrated by the great physicist James Clerk Maxwell in 1857. When this brass bell shaped top is spinning an interesting stability can occur- push on the pointed stem and the top will push back, forcing the stem against that object, and friction will cause the stem to roll along and trace the edge of the object. Note- magnets are NOT involved here. The key to this design is to make the contact point/tip of the top at its own center of mass, then any frictional force in contact with the stem will produce a torque about the contact point at a right angle to the direction of friction that creates the stabilizing force (students of physics may recognize application of the right hand rule here). This beautiful historical replica is now available from machinist and creator Jim Peever @machinedmarvels- and as far as I know the only other replicas of this device where made in the 1880’s!

Motion of Rolling Sphericons

Get these and other amazing developable rollers here:

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Hexacon and Sphericon Rollers

Note: this site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated

Sphericons are unique solids that roll in such a way that every point on their surface comes in contact with the plane. Solids from the sphericon family all have one side and two edges. Each sphericon is based on an even sided regular polygon, with the basic sphericon derived from a square, and the next two possible shapes are the hexa-sphericon and octo-sphericon, each rolling with a more complicated path.

Perpetual Motion Simulator V2.0

This new demonstration transparent model is available here:
From Amazon: BUY NOW: Transparent Perpetual Simulator

Get the original here:
From Etsy: BUY NOW: Perpetual Marble Machine (reccomended seller: William Le of BackToNatureDecor)

Note: this site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated

Perpetual Motion Simulator V2.0: a version with a transparent casing that reveals the sophisticated mechanism and electronics behind the newest “perpetual motion” toy that hit the internet a couple years ago. The original version was expertly crafted to make the base look like a block of wood (see post from November), but here we see a battery, a coil, a set of large capacitors, and a blue sensor unit along with circuit boards. The sensor detects the descending metal ball and then in an amazingly short amount of time the circuit discharges the capacitors through the coil to produce a magnetic pulse that accelerates the ball. Still looking into what kind of sensor is used- but this circuit is an excellent reminder that when someone claims a perpetual motion device the question to ask is “where’s the battery hidden?”

See Steve Mould's excellent video for details on the Perpetual Motion Simulator Circuirtry 

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Resin Art Dome Kalliiroscope

This item came from this Etsy shop:
From Etsy: SHOP NOW: Sensory Fidgets

A nice larger glass version is available from this trusted seller:
From PhysicsHack: BUY NOW: Vortex Dome Kalliroscope 

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Resin Art Dome Kalliroscope: visualizing fluid flow— rheoscopic fluid allows turbulent flow to be made visible with tiny flake crystals of mica catching the light. This fidget version of the kalliroscope is well constructed from poured resin that provides a tight seal- and note that great care was taken to prevent any air bubbles into the system. Rheoscopic fluids were developed by Paul Matisse in the 1970s to allow visualization of fluid motion. 

Spinning Liquid Pen

Get this pen set here (dolphin, turtle, polar bear, penguin):

From Amazon: BUY NOW: Spinning Liquid Motion Pens

Note: this site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated

Spinning Liquid Pen: two immiscible fluids (three if you count the air bubble) are sorted under gravity by density with the densest on the bottom and the lightest on top. When the container is rotated, the boundary between the layers forms a parabola due to the added influence of centripetal acceleration as seen here in 240 fps slow motion. The plastic dolphin has a density between that of the two liquids so it stays at the boundary layer. A rather silly toy- but so much physics to explore here!