Extreme Oxidation of The Neuron Chamber

Well Lightwave is over and The Neuron Chamber is on its way back home.  The show was allot of fun, the piece ran very smoothly  and we made some great new friends.

It was really cool to have the piece up and running for a sold month and it was really interesting to see how how things changes as it aged.

One really striking change was the extreme amount of oxidation we observed.  After the first week we noticed that allot of rust had built up on the neuron sculptures really quickly.  We soon realized that the ozone generated by the high-voltage discharge was responsible for this rapid oxidation.

Not only did the ozone oxidize the steel to create a very fine, powdery, orange rust, but it also oxidized the copper to a beautiful blue-green color.

Here are two photos of what the neuron sculptures looked like at the start of the show.



Here you can see the amazing blue-green patina that developed on the copper tubes.  When we originally made the axons we tried to build up this exact same patina using cupric nitrite, but it never took.


Here you can see the fine powdery rust on one of the dendrites.  Also you can stat to see that the rust has fallen onto the bottom creating the projection of the dendrite.

The oxidation also built up on the inside of the chamber, under the glass, as well.


Intriguingly the oxidation was not even.  In the next few photos you can see how it built up allot in some spots but not others.








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