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Thread: Optics Question: Anamorphic Prisms for use in a stage magic show.

  1. #1 Optics Question: Anamorphic Prisms for use in a stage magic show. 
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    Aug 2011
    Salisbury, UK
    My question pertains to Anamorphic Prisms and their application to making an object appear to be invisible from one direction.
    Anamorphic Prisms re used in pairs to modify the beam shape of lasers to make oval beams round (or vice-versa)
    This lateral image compression gave me an idea to use four pairs to compress the light from behind an object into two narrow images and to re-expand them on the other side of the object. The idea being that any object placed in the unused central void would appear to be invisible from the point of view of the audience.

    Now, obviously I could have reflected the light around the object using mirrors, but the idea of using Anamorphic Prisms is that the lateral image compression means that the space required on either side of the object is much smaller and therefore easier to conceal in the frame of a box.

    My question is whether this would work; whether I have misundertood the optics; or even if there is a better technique that someone could suggest.

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  3. #2  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope MagiMaster's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Getting the geometry right could be tricky and there'd probably be some edge effects in the line right down the middle, but it should work. I'm not sure how the range over which it'd look right would compare to mirrors though.

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