Stoneridge Engineering: Bert Hickman’s Captured Lightning

Engineer and sculptor Bert Hickman’s explores his fascination with the Lichtenberg Figure — a branch or fern-like pattern that occurs on inductive surfaces after meeting a high voltage discharge – by suspending the phenomenon in solid polymer acrylic. These sculptures, created by “injecting” electrons into the structures using a 150KW machine called a Dynamitron, isolate the fractal effect of the discharge while the polymer maintains the image’s permanence. What is left are elegant lightning sculptures “captured” for the human eye.

Learn more about how Hickman makes his creations here. And, for more information about the Lichtenberg Figure: here is a short history of its discovery, and the strange beauty of lightning scars.

Erin Saunders