|Gallery 1 contains a number of great exhibits on visible and invisible color. The room is a whirling kaleidoscope of light color and modern technology. This exhibit,
constructed by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, offers
amazing lifelike holograms, light split into a rainbow of colors and
the physics of reflection. The exhibit is extremely pleasing to the
eye with its sophisticated design and colorful displays. Visitors can fit the pieces to fill their needs.
This exhibit uses a series of mirrors to create a reflection that
actually looks like a three dimensional object. When your kids try to
pick it up, there is nothing there. It is all an illusion created by
reflected light, that makes the object they are trying to pick up
appear to float in the air, ready for their "picking."Not really!
Cheek o Cheek
This exhibit shows what happens when mirrors change the angle of light
that if reflected between them.
Color on Color
Your kids will see what happens when colored lights actually overlap. The
exhibit has visitors use a number of differently colored filters to
produce completely different colors of light. Red and green filters
produce yellow light while red and blue filters produce magenta. The
exhibit has lots of information on why each color is produced and how.
See how many different colors you can make by simply placing your
hands under a series of red, green and blue bright lights. When your
hand blocks one color, the other two colors merge together to form a
completely different color.
Holograms on Parade
We see holograms on Star Trek and other science programs all the time but
rarely do we see one in real life. Now you can. This exhibit shows
that holograms are made form lasers, photographic quality film and
special lighting. The holograms in this exhibit are examples of a
Have your kids move a lever on this exhibit to make sparks jump
through the air. This exhibit teaches us that the air we breathe is
composed of mostly nitrogen and oxygen atoms. The purple sparks are
caused by the electric current in the exhibit stimulates the electrons
in the atoms of these two elements in "regular air."
This exhibit uses the invisible part of the light spectrum, infrared
light, to create music. Have your kids run the their hands and arms
inside what looks like an empty frame. Instantly musical tones, from
high to low, erupt from the speakers on the exhibit. Infrared light is
reflected from the top of the frame to the bottom. As little hands and
arms block the invisible beams of light, the computer inside the
exhibit makes a sound that corresponds to the beam that was
Light Within a Light
This exhibit uses a coated light tube and an uncoated one. It shows
how fluorescent light is created and is so different from the light
produced by an ordinary light bulb. The phosphor coating on one of the
tubes takes the mercury gas that is inside both tubes and causes the
gas to actually glow.
Look at Lights and Rainbow Glasses
The two dark tubes may look alike when turned off but when they have
electricity flowing through them, the gasses inside them are
stimulated. Each tube contains a different gas, and each gas produces
a different color. Neon emits red gas and Argon emits a bluish light.
Look at them in rainbow glasses and you can see how even that light is
separated into all the colors of the rainbow.
This exhibit shows that the angle that light hits mirrors determines how
many images are produced. Kids can adjust mirrors while looking at a
tiny stationary mouse model. As they move the mirrors around they see
the number of mice grow from two to three to four to more. This is
because the smaller the angle between the two mirrors being moved is,
the more light will bounce back and forth before reaching their eyes.
The more the light bounces, the more images your family will see.
Now You See It
This very simple exhibit shows that black is not a color. Black is
simply the absence of light. This exhibit uses a box with the inside
painted a dazzling white to produce a profound black. Kids learn that
black is simply the absence of white light.
Visitors can look through and move a periscope 180 degrees in all
Refraction in Action
Have your kids drastically change the direction of a beam of light by
using a series of lenses. They will quickly see that the lenses
actually bend the light beams. Even more interestingly, they will see
that some lenses can make the beams of light collapse upon each other
and the other lens will scatter the beams of light to the four winds.
This exhibit introduces kids to a word they will learn in textbook science ?refraction.
Spinning Light Discs
We can take several different colors on a disk and tell that they are
just that. But what happens when we spin the disk, faster and faster.
Right before your eyes the colors on the disk merge and become another
color completely. The colors on the disk absorb and reflect different
wavelengths of light, when combined, the light that is reflected is a
combination of the absorbed light on both colors on the disk.
The Rainbow Effect and Rainbow Glasses
Kids know that light looks white. But these exhibits show them that when
light is split by a prism that it fans out like a peacock spreading
its feathers. We can this light dispersion in scientific terms. The
rainbow that visitors see is simply the visible color spectrum that
makes up ordinary light.
What's In a Light Bulb?
You kids will see that when you turning a knob on this exhibit, they
can control the amount of light put out by a bulb. The exhibit vividly
illustrates how the electricity that flows through a filament of light
causes it to become incandescent. The degree of incandescence is
controlled by the amount of electricity that flows through the
filament that in turn is a function of how the visitor turns the knob
on the exhibit.