A Bright Idea For Writing Messages On The Night Sky

Ever write in the air at night with sparklers? The fiery light burns a temporary image into your retina. Yokohama-based Avix Inc. has used the same effect to make a baton for police that etches nighttime warnings in thin air. The battery-powered device fools your eyes with 32 light-emitting diodes (LEDs). The baton is held vertically and swept from side to side. It creates an image in horizontal stripes the same way a skywriting airplane does, except with flashes of light instead of smoke puffs. It could be used to write, say, "stop" in Japanese or English.

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