Pepper's Ghost

Pepper's Ghost

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Credit: SCIENCE, INDUSTRY & BUSINESS LIBRARY/NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Pepper's Ghost. Historical artwork of a stage performance utilising Pepper's Ghost. Patented in 1879 by John Henry Pepper, a professor at London Polytechnic Institution, and Henry Dirk, who had originally invented a small working model in 1860. The optical illusion uses a plate sheet of glass at a 45 degree angle to the audience (far right). When an off-stage actor (ghost, lower right) is illuminated (lower left), an image is reflected by the glass. To the audience the reflection is then perceived as an image on stage (centre left). The principle behind Pepper's ghost is now used in aircraft Head-up Displays (HUDs).

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