David R. Usher
Partial Resume of Multimedia Fountains Worldwide

-- Seventeen years of professional service --


Aquamation is focused on, and has successful experience developing products in conjunction with large corporations creating remarkable, patentable, competitive mass-market consumer products. I have designed specialty coherent-flow nozzles for military and high-tech applications for clients such as McDonnell Douglas. We have experience working on patents, applications, and the documentation process.

Aquamation provides neutral opinions for large fountain projects, on a consulting basis, to evaluate the robustness of fountain designs and animatronics systems offered by end-providers, before they are contracted out or used as the basis for an RFP. We are not affiliated or aligned with any other fountain company, so our opinion is based entirely on the technical merits of any proposed design. Our neutral opinion can help you avoid ending up with a "disaster fountain". We do not provide design services for others wishing to design fountains.

Aquamation no longer manufactures, designs, or installs fountains for commercial sale.

Electrical panels for previous projects included detailed as-built drawings, including load requirement, numbered ladder logic, wire numbers, wire sizes and colors, numbered terminal blocks/barriers with nomenclature and voltages, and bill of materials. All panels meet N.E.C and C.S.A standards. Panels are also available to meet U.L. 508, L.A. Testing Labs. Panels for export utilize I.E.C. Components.

Below is a selection of fountains I have designed and installed. Please pay special attention to the coherent flow nozzle fountains. Coherent flow nozzles have astonishing properties, and are still in the early stages of being incorporated into consumer, military, medical, toys, and other innovative products.

You can contact Aquamation, Inc. at :

Dave Usher, President
1381 Mirandy Dr
St. Louis, MO 63146
314 991-1959
Welcome, visitor number

Reno Hilton Hotel
Reno, NV

Original theatrical special effects "dance thru" fountains. The largest indoor stage fountains in the world. Unusual effects include coherent flow nozzle dance niches, a 60-gallon 24ft wide water dump from 50-ft height into a 5-ft wide trough, A number of servopositionable nozzles operated concisely via joystick.. A rolloff setpiece/tank is equipped with 18-nozzle wave fountain and bubble panels, which join up to a large swim tank equipped with a 1,000 GPM waterfall in rolloff setpiece

The entire fountain set can be struck and removed in less than 3 minutes. A 100' long continuous series of prefab stainless steel tanks downstage contain a palette of fountain effects for dancers to perform in, via a special flooring surface. A giant water arch traverses the downstage area 80 feet from wing to wing. This fountain is designed for live theatrical performace, and is manually operated via a professional illuminated "busy box", assisted by PLC-generated presets.

"Splash II"
Riviera Hotel
Las Vegas, NV

The wildest interactive room full of prefab "dance thru" theatrical environmental fountains in the world, automated to house click track. Unusual effects include coherent flow dance niches, water dump, strobed balls of frozen waterwater frozen in mid-air, rear-projection waterscreen nozzle that pops up out of the floor, animated natural stage fog clouds, laser-scanned nozzles, and 1000-GPM heavily-aerated waterfall in swim tank.

A series of prefab continuous stainless steel tanks, with special dance surface, runs wing-to-wing downstage. A full wet pasarelle thrusts into the audience. Animated coherent rain curtains downstage and over pasarelle surround seating in pasarelle center, falling from the ceiling into the narrow wet pasarelle without splash or need for adjustment. Submersible DMX-controlled stobe lights freeze strings of 1/2" diamater balls of water in the air. A palette of animated water effects are tightly integrated into the downstage tanks and pasarelle for interactive dancing. Servopositionable nozzles and all fountain effects perform sensitively to the music via analog signals from the animation system, which is fully automated to sync to house click track.

Producer can change scene sequence or drop scenes as desired (for nights off, illness, etc) without need for reprogramming fountain animation - our windows-based animation system with full drag/drop offline editing features automatically self-loads and executes according to click track SMPTE hour.

Since photographs of this show are not allowed to be taken, above is a photo of one of the unusual effects used in the show. Balls of water are frozen in the air, in shimmering beauty, and then made to "move" back and forth.

Wonderland of Southwest China
Chendu, People's Republic of China

A beautiful 130-foot, 270-HP automated prefab watershow with 144,000w of dimmable lighting on 36 solid-state dimmers, 4,000 watts of waterproof dmx-controlled strobe lighting, 20 analog positionable nozzle effects on submersible servopositioners, 60 digital valved effects operated as 9 bi-symmetrically paired horizontal groups; all operated via user-friendly windows-based PC software with realtime programming ability, full graphical click/drag/draw offline editing of digital and analog effects, auto-synced to Turtle Beach 44.1K digital sound system, with DMX-512 datalink between computer and fountains.

This responsive fountain redefines the state of the art for watershows. It has 9 "modules" that are individually addressable from the computer, and are operated hydraulically and electronically ndependently of the others. Hence each "module" can perform fully independently of the others.

To assure visual balance and speed the programming of shows, modules are electronically addressed as pairs (from center).

This "Paired bisymmetrical" operation provides an expressive horizontal component lacking in other watershows. In other shows, if an effect is actuated, it must happen along the entire length of the watershow. The old approach limits expressivity significantly, because our human minds naturally key into both horizontal and vertical movements. For example, can you imagine how boring the Olympic skating competitions would be if the skaters only moved "up" and "down"?

In the old-style shows, there is basically no horizontal component to the animation - everything is "up and down" along the entire length of the fountain. Our approach permits all sorts of interesting combinations of fountain interaction along both horizontal and vertical components, rendering this style of fountain far more expressive than any fountain ever manufactured.

The analog dimmers provide full expressivity of lighting, and servopositionable nozzles provide absolute visual synchronization of all primary moving nozzles.

Bullwinkle's Family Food and Fun Restaurants:

An ongoing series of prefabricated "quick-install" premanufactured watershows for primary entertainment in the dining area of this family pizza chain restaurant, now in operation for 16 years. These fountains are long considered the "secret weapon" of this restaurant chain in the highly-competitive pizza market, as related to me by the President. These fountains also included production services of over 130 8-minute musical automated entertainment segments.

This fountain is a "unibody" prefab design, for quick installation requiring less than 4 days. The fountain is designed to be very efficient with floor space, and uses special nozzle configurations, requiring only 192 sqft of floor space (8" x 24') while shooting nearly 15' into the air.

Seaworld of Texas (San Antonio):

Jumping Jets for a childrens' wet play area.

Mitsubishi Corporation
Takasago Machinery Works, Takasago, Japan:

A 400-nozzle precisely-animated musical wave fountain system with bi-level height controls.

Wave fountains are most unusual because of the extreme punctual, nearly "digital" crispness with which the large volumes of water are turned on and off. Because of the extremely crisp control, and the arrangement of nozzles on any desired matrix, the water sprays appear to make "waves". By layering rows of nozzles behind each other, and utilizing bilevel controls, multiple layers of patterns are formed.

At first, I thought this style of fountain would not be real good for musical applications. I was convinced otherwise after seeing the "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy" come to life in this wave fountain.

This fountain has appeared on NHK, Japanese national television.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Minakamikan Hotel, Gunma Prefecture, Japan:

A beautiful 24-Nozzle wave fountain for this exclusive weekend resort and wedding paradise hotel. Each high-volume nozzle is precisely and individually controlled to lights and sound by a MIDI-based system. This installation includes "natural" fog nozzles at the base of the fountains.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Tajima Airport, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan:

A Crystal Cake Fountain features cake figures with 3 individual effects on each "cake", animated to lights and sound controlled by a MIDI-based system.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
A business center in Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan:

A very beautiful 24-nozzle animated wave fountain with Crystal Cake geyser, water screen, Tulip Jet nozzle, Lights, and sound system, animated by a MIDI-based computer system.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Soomo Kyodo Electric Power, Co., Ltd.
Fukushima Prefecture, Japan:

Another beautiful 24-nozzle wave fountain, animated to lights and sound, controlled by a MIDI-based computer system.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Shimozu Bay Office
Wakayama prefecture, Japan:

A beautiful 40-nozzle wave fountain, animated to lights and sound controlled by a MIDI-based computer system, accompanied by lasers, and even some fireworks.

Sentosa Island

Four large waterfalls, including a waterfall over artificial rock restaurant veranda, and pumping stations built into a very steep hillside for a most unusual cliffside miniature golf course and entertainment center.

Fuji Electric Corporation
Shinshu Expo'93
Sapporo Japan:

A high tech water indoor animated temporary water environment with jumping jets, a room-size "mirror-box" fountain with jumping jewels, natural fog and other fountain patterns, "Jumping Light" fountain, and coherent-bubble play fountains.

Above is another very unusual fountain effect. Internally-illuminated coherent nozzles are marvelous play features, because the light is visible only where the water lands, as shown on the right. On the left is our "jumping light" effect, where light is made to jump from one place to another. This effect can be put into our Jumping Jets, so that the unit is visible both during the day and at night.

Jumping Jet (shop photo) As seen on national television.

The Aquamation Jumping Jet features a true "coherent" stream of water, not a semi-coherent frothy stream, for a most exciting visual effect. We are presently developing a new, low cost, higher reliability jumping jet device so that Jumping Jets can have the low maintenance level required by malls and other facilities that do not have a high-tech maintenance staff.

Coherent Stream on Mirrored Ball Demonstration

This photo illustrates the precise coherence of Aquamation coherent nozzles (patented). The water is so perfect, it simply collapses on to this mirrored sphere and silently runs down it without splashing.

I always enjoy demostrating what happens when a light bulb is put into the stream. The water collapses on the bulb, runs all the way around the bulb, and emanates from the other side in a rather coherent stream (without splashing). Coherent streams are capable of perfect trajectories to 16 ft. horizontal and 8 ft. vertical while maintaining perfect coherence.

The stream is so clear and precise that it is difficult for the viewer to tell which direction it is flowing. Many people think it isn't water, and have to get themselves quite wet before being convinced that there is nothing holding the water stream in place. One engineer from Britain was convinced that we had removed all the oxygen from the stream, but we reminded him that if there were no oxygen in it, it would not be water !! A pipeline engineer from Shell Oil insisted that is was simply not possible to do it. Boy, did he get wet !!

Coherent water streams are the hydraulic equivalent of a laser: every molecule of water is going in precisely the same direction at the same velocity (no laminarity is present). The water would stick together forever if we didnt have a problem with air friction eventually destroying the coherency.

Developers in the fields of aviation and aviation maintenance, surgery (opthalmic and knee surgeons), chiropracters, and fire nozzle manufacturers are strongl encouraged to contact me for join development of valuable new products in their fields. Just as the laser has found hundreds of extremely valuable scientific and real-world uses, so will coherent nozzles.

Seaworld of Florida:

A natural fog system and unusual underwater fiber-optic lighting system for the now-famous entrance of the park.

Sesame Place:
Busch Entertainment

Jumping Jets and Jumping Jewels (patented) for the childrens wet play area of this Anheuser-Busch park. The jumping jewels are built into prefab burial vults for fats, easy trenchwork installation. Special covers integrate into the Vitriturf non-skid play surface.

Shilla Hotel
Cheju Island, Korea:

Acres of natural fog for various locations on the greens around this ultra-exclusive hotel on Cheju Island.

Our natural fog systems feature a special impingement-type nozzle. Water is forced through a man-made laser-drilled ruby orifice with a hole only .006 inches in diameter, at high pressure, which vaporizes into a natural cloud when it hits the end of a tiny pin.

These fog systems are a valuable lanscape item to improve the appearance of your grounds, and make it look like something out of a story book.

Fog systems also provide outdoor air conditioning for poolside areas, waiting lines, and eating areas, and will lower the air temperature in the vicinity from 5 to 15 degrees farhenheit (depending on the ambient humidity). Theme parks now have happier customers, and don't have to provide as many cool indoor areas for people to cool down in. Those enjoying your poolside can get a tan and read without getting too hot.

Fog systems are also make a superb theatrical effect, because they are very inexpensive to operate compared with LN2 systems and do not deplete oxygen in indoor areas, are odor and chemical-free (many performers will not work around chemical fog), and act as a secondary cooling system for your theatre. We can animate fog so it looks like clouds coming from heaven (as we did at the Splash show at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas). All fog systems include a special pump system enclosed in a weatherproof stainless steel enclosure, for outdoor or indoor location. We use low-RPM motors (1120 rpm maximum) so your fog pump is extremely quiet.

Special options include a perfume injector, so your area can smell like a field of flowers, a pine forest, or just about anything you would like.

Ritz Carlton Hotel

Design and consulting services on interior and exterior fountain packages. Pictured is a looking-glass waterfall, with only 5mm of water flowing across a black flamed granite plateau, which runs glasslike into a trough adjacent to the window. The window is visible at the top of the photo, the reflections in the lower part.

Bubble Panel (patent pending)

This unique fountain, a "graphic" bubble panel, requires little floor space. A single-board computer (located in the base) prints messages and graphics by injecting coherent air bubbles into the panel window. This one is designed as an office piece, finished in nicely finished hardwoods. It can print two or three letters at a time, but wider versions could print more. I can make them up to 15 feet tall, and as wide as you would like. Graphics are really cool to watch as they form in the panel and rise silently. The patterns can be changed by connecting a laptop computer to the bubble panel, and accessing software in the bubble panel designed to easily create anything you want.

Those who would like a real attraction for malls, who don't want to eat up a lot of floor space, should find this kind of fountain most attractive. I think it would be great in a food court, because you could sell advertising space to the soda vendors and maybe make money off your fountain while everyone has a great time watching it. I think this would also be a riot in nightclubs, possibly utilizing flourescent dyes and blacklighting to make the bubbles pop out in the dark.

For those who prefer the simple and inexpensive approach, I also do "non animated" bubble panels, in just about any size. Tired of boring windows? Try a bubble panel for a change.

Horizontal Coherent Bubble Play Fountain
[ Science Center Demonstration Unit ]

When water is truly coherent, it sticks together for an amazingly long time.

Here is a bubble of water about 18" wide and 12" high that emanates from the wall !! This one is not easy to figure out, but if you can imagine one of those "mushroom nozzles" you see at the mall that is so coherent that the nozzle can be pointed horizontally, the film rising while exiting horizontally, and healing over, then you understand how it looks in person.

This one has a special kind of illumination we use to make the bubble look like a brilliant cats eye, the colors folluw you as you walk past it.

The bubble is extremely coherent, and is so clear that you can read a book through it. It is quite surprising to watch water form a fully-developed bubble that is clearer than a soap bubble. I was on national television putting a cigarette into one of these bubbles and watching it fill up with smoke.

These are built into walls, stairsteps, and freestanding units as play fountains for children's areas and science centers.

Forest Fair Mall
Cincinnati, OH

This forty-foot long coherent-flow waterfall permits a good-sized waterfall in the acoustically-live atrium of this mall, without having a noise problem. This one is falling about 40" while making about as much noise as an average room fan.

Coherent waterfalls are virtually noiseless because the water does not splash upon landing in the lower pool. I just slides into the lower pool without noise or splashing. Thus, they are a good choice for areas where white noise is not acceptable, such as office building foyers, and locations near stores in a mall.

In the past, designers of malls and office buildings have been limited to small nozzles and very short waterfalls because of the noise problem. Coherent waterfalls eliminate this problem, permitting better proportions of entryways. Coherent waterfalls can be combined with coherent nozzles for effective use of clearstory space and absolute silence in your mallway or foyer. Since coherent waterfalls do not splash, they are an ideal choice for areas tight on floor space, or where the landing pool must be narrow.

Coherent waterfalls are custom designed to specification, according to the architects needs.

An Aquamation electrical panel

ll Aquamation panels are designed in -house, and built to UL-508 specifications, which should pass any inspection anywhere in North America and most parts of Asia. U.L. tag is available for all panels for cost of the inspection. I.E.C. components are used in all panels for the export market, for easy parts sourcing. All panels are thoroughly documented with ladder diagrams.

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