The MULTIPLEX COMPANY

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"In a sense, I might say, whereas Dennis Gabor's desire to get into holography was based on his desires to see atoms, I feel beyond seeing atoms, I am interested in seeing my brain." Lloyd Cross,

There is no one better qualified to give a history of the Multiplex Company than one of its founders, Lloyd Cross. Here is his own typewritten story, written in about 1977 or 1978.

Lloyd makes the social scene in this (unnamed, but dated) newspaper clipping of the Laser Ball at the Detroit Institute of Arts mentioned in the above.

Laser Ball 70

Although the Multiplex Company claimed to have a somewhat hippie style business plan, click here to find out what it was really like to deal with them.

Notice not only the postmark on this Multiplex brochure, but the man on the stamp was a major fan of stereo photography in the mid 19th century! He invented the most popular of stereoscopes, which bear his name! Click here for the brochure.

Postmark Plex

(Ooops! After checking the facts, the man on the stamp is Oliver Wendell Holmes, the son of the inventor of the Holmes Stereoscope! But I am sure that both of the Holmeses would be delighted in viewing Multiplex holograms!)

This advertisement, unfortunately undated, appeared in Scientific American. Holex of Norristown, Pennsylvania, USA, was the middleman, but they had been producing their own line of laser transmission holograms since the early '70's.

Multiplex Ad in Scientific American

Emmett N. Leith, in Scientific American, called them "Some of the most dramatic and sophisticated of all holograms", and even offered some improvements in the optical train of the printer in Optical Engineering, January/February 1985, Vol. 24, No.1, pp.171-175.

Another academic group at the University of Dayton delved into the optics of the printer, here are a pair of their papers, "Optical Techniques for Increasing Image Width In Cylindrical Holographic Stereograms," Proc. SPIE 215, Recent Advances in Holography, (1980), and "Use of a Holographic Lens for Producing Cylindrical Holographic Stereograms, Optical Engineering 20(2), 236 -240 (March /April 1981). They also published in The Proceedings of the First International Symposium on Display Holography. Lloyd Huff and Richard Fusek are the co-authors, the former had made an Nd:YAG solar pumped laser! (Need to find the article in Laser Focus!) The idea would be to use sunlight directly to pump the rod for the laser in a satellite, and use that laser for communications, without having to convert the sunlight to electricity with the solar panels, and then into pump light for the rod.

A famous Multiplex hologram with a fabulous story is the "Scintihologram", described by its auteur here, and this author's involvement with it here.

If anyone would like to see dozens of Multiplex Holograms, check out Jason Sapan's Holographic Studio, at 240 East 26th Street, New York, NY.