Unidentified

This sphere was probably used for demonstration purposes in R.M.M. Obermann’s lectures on electrical engineering, somewhere between 1950 and 1980. It represents a model of a five-dimensional cube (!?). If you wish to see the object for real, you can visit the Library Learning Centre, where it will be on display up to and including September.

Do you know anything about this object?
Do you recognise this object or do you have an idea of what it would have been used for? You can discuss the object and add your comments below. We hope this will help us to find out as much as we can about it.

Physical description
The surface of the sphere is covered with a network of grooves that represent the edges of a five-dimensional cube. The 32 vertices of this cube are indicated by 31 holes, which have all been provided with a combination of a letter and number. The 32nd vertex is the axis on which the sphere turns. In the holes there are sixteen plugs numbered 0-15 in red and fifteen plugs numbered 1-15 in black. A red thread has been wound along 22 of the 32 vertices.

   

Click to enlarge

Pictures: Jan ver der Heul