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Lessley, Merrill J

Professor Emerita/Emeritus


Research Areas research areas


research overview

  • In my work, I am intererested in creating laser images in motion that represent specific mathematical curves (epicycloids, hypocycloids, roses, epitrochoids, hypotrochoids, and other special sine/cosine cases). My image “sequences” are created by using a computer-controlled laser projection system designed by myself (FPGA technology). Graphing such curves in multiple laser colors produces a wide variety of appealing images. Unlike drawing them with a pencil on paper, however, projecting such curves with a laser poses a particularly challenging problem: while a laser is often referred to as a kind of “pencil” in light, it can only be used to generate a complete picture by moving its projected “dot” rapidly and repeatedly over a reflective surface. My images are scanned at rates between 15 and 1200 times per second.


  • laser art imaging, laser projections, laser projections of mathematical curves


International Activities