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Moiré Patterns

Moiré fringes are an interference pattern that is formed when two similar grids overlap each other. The result is a series of fringe patterns that change shape when as the grids are translated. One of the more common occurrences of moiré patterns is found in computer monitors and television sets where we see an ordered wavy pattern is superimposed over the screen in a series of ripples. Moiré patterns also are a common problem in scanned images due to interference between the printed dot pattern and the reflection of the image.

Our exploration of the moiré effect in Science, Optics & You begins with a series of Java-based experiments of this phenomena. Visit the links below to view our demonstrations of the moiré effect.

Moiré Bald Eagle -- (Download time is approximately 6-12 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the American Bald Eagle to flap its wings.

Moiré Butterfly -- (Download time is approximately 10-15 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the butterfly to flap its wings.

Playing Card Icons -- (Download time is approximately 20 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) A diamond, heart, club, and spade from playing cards. Move the grid to adjust the size of the cards.

Moiré Cheetah -- (Download time is approximately 6-12 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the cheetah to growl.

Moiré Fox -- (Download time is approximately 10-18 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the artic fox to lay down in the snow.

Moiré Running Horses -- (Download time is approximately 15-20 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the horses to run.

Moiré Praying Mantis -- (Download time is approximately 10-15 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the praying mantis to have its lunch.

Moiré Scorpion -- (Download time is approximately 6-12 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the scorpion to wave its tail and claws.

Moiré Tortoise -- (Download time is approximately 10-15 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the tortoise to go for a walk.

Moiré Woodpecker -- (Download time is approximately 12-18 seconds on a 28.8K modem.) See how moving the grid causes the woodpecker to attack a tree.

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