Explore the properties of light using mirrors, lasers and coloured filters. Freeze your shadow, take your eye apart and test yourself and fiends to see how well you see colour. Find out about moving images, pinhole cameras and fibre optics
Exhibition requirements

• A gallery or classroom with about 50 sq metres of open floor space
• 12 tables
• Electrical power
• The exhibition must be supervised at all times when in use, preferably by staff accustomed to working in an interactive environment


Download LightWorks Teachers’ Notes


Exhibit list

Anamorphs – draw on a board and observe the distorted reflection in a curved mirror. Place the flat shapes in front of the mirror to predict what shape their reflections will be (they are geometric shapes). Work out what the extremely distorted image is by using a small cylindrical mirror
Bendy Mirrors – two large mirrors are held in a frame.  Both are convex but one is curved horizontally and the other vertically.  The images viewed are distorted in height and width
Frozen Shadows – bright light is projected onto a photo-luminescent screen which glows for a while.  Place an object in front of the light to cast a shadow that will remain frozen afterwards
Laser Amazer – a pair of lasers produce beams of light which travel inside a box with a transparent top.  Turn the mirrors so the beams reflect onto lenses and more mirrors
Light Table – place coloured plastic filter pieces on a light table to observe the effect of subtracting colours from white light
Mirror Drawing – try to trace over the shapes looking only in a mirror. A screen over the top of the shapes prevents you from peeking; it isn’t easy but you will get better with practice
Mirror Maze – observe multiple reflections by arranging small mirrors on a larger one.  By fitting mirrors at angles into a partitioned box, an image can be seen at one corner by peering through a window in an opposite corner
Mixing Coloured Light – three lamps project spots of primary coloured light: red, blue and yellow onto a screen. Overlapping them produces secondary colours or white; placing an object in front of the lamps makes coloured shadows
Model Eye – dismantle and remake the large eye models; try the colour blindness test, and spectacles to view in 3D
Optical Fibres – point the bundle of optical fibres at the lamp, causing light to travel along the fibres and emerge at the other end.  Place transparent or opaque coloured sheets in front of the light to investigate transmission and reflection
Pinhole Camera – at the front of each of three ‘cameras’ is a hole (small, larger and much larger) with a lens.  Point a camera at a bright object or light and move the inner tube to focus the inverted image on the small screen inside
Zoetrope – a rotating drum with slots around it has a series of images displayed inside. Look through the slots as the drum rotates and the images appear to move