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Science Fair project

 
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 4:55 pm    Post subject: Science Fair project Reply with quote

In my anatomy and genetics class, you can get out of doing a paper on fruit flies if you enter the science fair. I would love to do a project focusing on the themed attraction business. Anyone have ideas for a fun project? I have a roller coaster model set that uses marbles, and I think an exhibit with a model would look cool. it's due in December, so I have some time, but the sooner the better!
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admin
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Joined: 28 Jul 2007
Posts: 381

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 6:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How about doing a pepper's ghost experiment? That's an article that's coming up for themedattraction.com
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know, I was just thinking about that! I'm reading the updated Doombuggies.com site, and now they have video clips of Tony Baxter talking about the ride. I have to do experiments for the project, and submit a notebook with data in it. What kinds of experiments would I do with Pepper's ghost?
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could talk about the history of it, how and where it was used. You could also explain some variations of it and how different layouts can be used to achieve the effect. Then you could set up a "light box" where the effect is actually pulled off. We actually used a Pepper's Ghost at HHN one year, was pretty cool!
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MartinJ



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 93
Location: Flint, MI

PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can perform quite a few experiments with light. Try using glass with different coatings on them, different light intensities on both sides of the glass. Alter the angle of the glass. Try using mirrors.

You need to be able to get measurable results. Have a standard form that volunteers can fill out for each variation. Find out which combination gives the best effect.

Good luck with whatever experiment you do come up with.
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Joined: 28 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can also do some pretty cool experiments with half-silvered mirrors. That's how lasers are made, by the way, as well as cool effects for theme park attractions.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks! Where would I go to get different types of glass and mirrors?
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MartinJ



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 93
Location: Flint, MI

PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try the dollar store. They should have inexpensive mirrors (cosmetics) photo frames. You won't be doing large scale experiments, I hope.

You can sometimes find photo frames marked as non-glare, or with UV protection (you know, to keep those snapshots looking spiffy even after ten years in the sun). The glass in them should give you a good sample. (Oh, you should find that non-glare glass won't work for the Pepper's Ghost effect... you need the glaring reflection). Some frames will be real glass. Some will be acrylic (puh-lastic).

You can also try using polyurethane sealer and painting it on the glass. This may change things. This is the creative part, finding random stuff you can apply to change the effect.

You might be able to half-silver a mirror by carefully wiping the back with sand paper. You don't want to remove all the coating. Just enough that you can barely see through it. This is similar to a scrim where the brightness will tell you if the object is reflective or semi-transparent.

I would scrimp and use as low cost products as you can for the experiments. Save your budget for the final presentation model.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Magic Shop?
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wokcreative



Joined: 24 Aug 2007
Posts: 197
Location: ProgressLand

PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2007 3:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could also experiment with multiple layers to see if you could start with nothing there, then revealing one thing, then revealing something else, too. This might work, with the first one using the 45 degree angle on one side, then the other one using the angle on the other side, or one below and a different one above (HM banquet hall).
You could reveal fruit flies! - just to show them all how exciting science can really be, instead of something everyone wants to get out of. More of this is needed (and being done all the time) in the science centers, to make it more exciting to learn.
Just some thoughts.

I just did a search on Yahoo! for one-way glass and got better results with one-way mirrors. There is even a www.twowaymirrors.com site. They even have scrap pieces for sale that would be big enough for a project. I love the internet.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2007 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I figured I can experiment with: glass, non-glare glass, plastic, mirrors, half-silvered mirrors, and colored glass. For my actual diplay, I was thinking of a shoebox with an eye-hole that reveals a doll, and then have the light fade in and out, so it looks like the doll disappears. Is there any way i could have the doll moving at the same time?
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admin
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2007 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You should also try polarized glass. Put two pieces together and it's clear... but rotate one of the two pieces 90 degrees and the whole thing turns opaque! Cool stuff. Polarized material is what 3-d glasses are made of these days.
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icandrawem2



Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 171

PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2007 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We got some peppers ghost dvds that we picked up at transworld this past year and id be glad to send you a copy if you pm me your address...I hope i can find them, but will def send if i do. They both give really good insight on how to achieve different effects with glass, mirrors, scrims, and fog. one of them deals more with projection ghosts but still fun to learn. good luck!
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wokcreative



Joined: 24 Aug 2007
Posts: 197
Location: ProgressLand

PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2007 1:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What are they called and are they available through someplace still? That would be fun to see and learn more about.

& What is transworld?
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icandrawem2



Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 171

PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2007 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

transworld is the national halloween costume and party show held each year in Chicago, although it will be in vegas starting in 2008. i dont remember the name of the dvds but i will let you know as soon as i find them.
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wokcreative



Joined: 24 Aug 2007
Posts: 197
Location: ProgressLand

PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2007 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I hadn't heard of that one before.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2007 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the project, I have to have a hypothesis. What hypothesis would allow me to play with the illusion? Like, would it have to say something like "Glass is not the best reflector for this setup"? It also has to be done by early December.
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MartinJ



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 93
Location: Flint, MI

PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2007 6:44 pm    Post subject: Hypothesis Reply with quote

I would avoid a contrived hypothesis. Teachers can spot that pretty easily. Instead, why don't you make a guess as to which type of setup provides the best effect and use that as your hypothesis ("Glass X and Y watt light provides the most believable Pepper's Ghost").
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2007 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I'm not changing the light, since this does need to be simple. My teacher suggested an if/then statement, like "If the illusion relies on reflection, then the most reflective material would be best."
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 5:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All righty, I have my supplies coming together. I just have to figure out a mounting system for the glass. It needs to be something adjustable, sturdy, and fits in a box. Got any suggestions?
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MartinJ



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 93
Location: Flint, MI

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How about something like a photo frame without the back? You can attach an angle brace so that it will have a base you can rotate or mount to the box.

I did a quick look for something that could be a swivel base. You could use a bolt with a couple of washers as long as you don't mind manually tightening it after rotating the frame into position.

Take a trip to Home Depot or Lowe's and browse their nuts and bolts (as well as maybe cabinet hardware) aisles.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2007 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I worked on my project all weekend, and it came together really nicely. I could have used some extra time, but who doesn't? I brought it in today (the due date), and the teacher won't even get a chance to look at it for 2 days!!!
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MartinJ



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 93
Location: Flint, MI

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2007 12:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good luck. I'm sure that it turned out great.
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rcj3



Joined: 31 Jul 2007
Posts: 41
Location: Maryland(for now)

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2007 1:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You will have share some pictures of it with us
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admin
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What did you finally come up with?
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2007 3:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tested four materials: regular glass, frosted glass, a mirror, and acrylic. Obviously, the frosted glass and the mirror didn't work at all, and the glass worked. To my surprise, the piece of acrylic also worked! Shocked Is this used anywhere, or does everyone just use glass?
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Acrylic will work but longevity wise, glass is best. After all, acrylic starts to change colors a bit and it scratches much more easily than glass. You could do the gag, but how would it look in 6 months to a year?
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2007 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was just in so much schock that it worked, I didn't even think about longevity! It could be good for temporary exhibits, like Halloween specials. It's certainly much lighter than glass.
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icandrawem2



Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 171

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2007 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does polycarbonate yellow as much as acrylic does? I wonder if it would be a good choice for this...Its more expensive that acrylic but practically unbreakable, but still scratches easier than glass. just a thought.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2008 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought I'd give a quick update. I turned in all of the paperwork today, so I'm officially entered in the Tidewater Science Fair. It'll be the second weekend of March at Old Dominion University. I had to put it under the "Engineering: Electrical and Mechanical" beacuse it doesn't really fit anywhere else.
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icandrawem2



Joined: 16 Aug 2007
Posts: 171

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2008 9:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Best of luck to you in the science fair! let us know how you do.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
Posts: 165
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2008 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had thought just turning in the paperwork got me in, but no! They have to approve it and accept you. I am one of THREE projects from my school to be accepted! They like me!
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