New Disney patent involves high speed projections on moving objects such as snowflakes, water droplets and more

Is Disney planning a significant upgrade to their projection shows? A new patent by the company reveals they’re developing technology that would theoretically allow for high speed projections to be shown on rapidly moving objects.

According to the Orlando Business Journal, the patent includes multiple projectors and a tracking system that can predict where a moving object is going in order to sync up the images. It also mentions the ability to project images on falling objects that aren’t quite as predictable such as water, snowflakes and much more.

The techniques can be used to project light onto rapidly and arbitrarily moving objects, such as water, snowflakes, confetti, foliage, water droplets, water “curtains” or waterfalls, flying objects (e.g., animals, insects, etc.), fish, projectiles, vehicles (e.g., unmanned aerial vehicles, autonomous vehicles, planes).

The design below from the patent outlines how Disney intends to pull off what sounds truly remarkable.

Disney patent.

Another image showed how multiple projectors could be used to show an image on a fast-moving object.

Disney patent.

This would represent a major change compared to Disney’s current projection-mapping that relies on the object to be stationary, such as the projections seen regularly on Cinderella Castle. Imagine a new show where Disney can show projections on snowflakes falling during a holiday parade or on drones flying through the sky. The possibilities that could be pulled off with this kind of technology are incredible (assuming it works).

As always, there’s no guarantee anything will come out of this idea just because a patent was filed. Disney is protecting their idea while they determine if it’s feasible in an application, such as for a future theme park show or attraction. Stay tuned! We’d love to see this idea brought to a show at a Disney park in the future.

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David is a Disney travel expert who created Notes from Neverland in 2018 after visiting Disney theme parks countless times. Previously, David spent way too much time writing about sports, and was featured in Sports Illustrated, MSN, Yahoo!, and in many other publications. Learn more or contact us.

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