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How to do Simple cheap optics experiments

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Posted by brian on September 4, 2008, 3:05 am
I wanted software to explain a concept but instead, i ended up using a strip
of mylar, some drawings, some plastic ties 2 clamps and a laser level.
(Perhaps if you have thicker mylar you can dispence with the plastic ties).
It actually worked really well.
Take a look at
You can find info about compound parabolics at
and at
Brian White

Posted by Morris Dovey on September 4, 2008, 3:21 am
brian wrote:

Nicely done!

Morris Dovey
DeSoto Solar
DeSoto, Iowa USA

Posted by ohara5.0 on September 5, 2008, 3:56 am
I am very impressed.  That is wonderful.  You should market that as a
simple optics demonstrator for schools.  Combine it with a freeware
ray tracing program and it's be a killer educational thing.

Posted by ohara5.0 on September 5, 2008, 3:23 pm
 On Sep 4, 11:56 pm, ohara...@mindspring.com wrote:


You could use this to demonstrate spherical aberration in telescopes.
You could demo the aberrations in grazing incidence x-ray telescopes.

Posted by brian white on January 30, 2009, 5:40 am
 brian wrote:

I think I have found software that is easy enough to use and that can be

It is called art of illusion and I have started a thread in their forum
about solar cooking.
https://sourceforge.net/forum/forum.php?thread_id )15545&forum_idG782
replies have been very helpful

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