Pipedream III is a high resolution embolograph (bubble raster) I created for the Ontario Science Centre, Toronto, Canada. It was installed in June, 2006. Like my earlier Pipedream pieces, Pipedream III utilizes a series of computer controlled pneumatic solenoids to inject small bubbles which slowly float up the tube, serving as pixels.

Unlike Pipedream I and II, this piece has 96 tubes of a smaller diameter. With this setup and some elaborate software, I can create relatively clear images, including faces (my own, to the left).

A few sample shots:

Alan, my collaborator
(picture taken from webcam
station nearby)


Ddesign, prototyping and installation process for Pipedream III:

Pre-Installation Prototyping

As a proof-of-concept I built a prototype with 96 pipes, approximately 8' wide and 25' high. I then used the prototype for testing programs to rasterize images and display them as bubbles.

Some early results (the face you may not recognize is my daughter):


Installation Process

Some pictures from the rather laborious installation in June:

  The empty space, in the new Weston Innovation Centre.
  Jeff and Alan, slaving away...
  ...everything has to be done 96 times.
  Tuning each tube (so the bubble will reach the top in the same amount of time)
  More tuning...
  The tubes are tuned, and the new LED's are nice.