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8 Blowers can make a vortex?

  1. Dec 22, 2011 #1
    Hello Physics gurus,
    lately I watched a nice installation of a dancing light weight fabric.
    Over the ground there were placed 8 blowers in circular positioning 45 degrees each one.
    So I'm wondering if there was some computer controlling the intensity of all those blowers.
    This fabric goes up and down, twirls, unfolds etc.
    What physics setup would make such thing?

    best regards,
    grassy
     

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  3. Dec 23, 2011 #2

    Bobbywhy

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    grassy, Welcome to Physics Forums!

    As for your question, judging from the photo all we can see is power cords leading from those fan blowers. It is doubtful any computer is controlling their intensity. I guess it is simply a "trial and error" setup...they anchored the material and then moved the blowers around until they got the behavior they wanted.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2011
  4. Dec 23, 2011 #3

    A.T.

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    I guess the blowers create a circular flow in the shape of a torus (donut). Was it just a fabric, or was some kind of weight embedded in it?
     
  5. Dec 23, 2011 #4
    hey guys,
    I had to check all my utube bookmarks...
    well I found this vid.
    I'm sure it will help you get a better idea of what I'm talking about



    cheers
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
  6. Jan 8, 2012 #5

    Hey A.T..pls check this video :


    do you still believe that there is no computer involved for this vortex?

    Best regards
    g.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
  7. Jan 8, 2012 #6

    Bobbywhy

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    Why do you insist there must be some computer involved? The result is beautiful, and mesmerizing. But there is no need for a closed-loop feedback system of optical sensing/imaging, computer decision-making, and fan control. Can you not visualize the air flow...vortex...that those 8 fans create? It's pretty simple, and has great artistic creative value.
     
  8. Jan 8, 2012 #7
    Hey Bobbywhy, i totally agree with you about this artistic installation.
    No computer controlling was my 1st thought about this.
    Since I'm not good in physics, yes it's hard hard for me to understand how this vortex is happening.
    I tried to simulate this within a 3d application, but got poor results.
    Simplicity can be art for sure!
    thanx for responding!

    g./
     
  9. Jan 8, 2012 #8

    A.T.

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    After watching the video I assume the fans are not pointed exactly towards the center of the circle, but slightly off, hence the vortex. But they still pump air into the central area, which has to escape somewhere. And the only way is up, hence the lift effect. You don't need computer control for this because the lift falls off with height. If the cloth goes to high it drifts to one side, falls down and gets pushed into the center again.
     
  10. Jan 8, 2012 #9
    You see!!!! you have it..... I don't.
    Yes this sounds to be the trick behind this excellent installation.
    I couldn't think of this detail about where these funs are pointing!!!
    Thank you very much for this...

    I started to think that a controller makes them run,
    in a higher speed and then lower back again, but not at the same time for all.
    cheers!
    g./
     
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