Cover image of The
Mathematical Intelligencer 26(4) (2004)

Crocheting the Lorenz manifold

Hinke M. Osinga & Bernd Krauskopf
The Mathematical Intelligencer 26(4) (2004) 25-37
(For text and crochet instructions, see the preprint)

Dr Hinke Osinga and Professor Bernd Krauskopf have turned the famous Lorenz equations that describe the nature of chaotic systems into a beautiful real-life object, by crocheting computer-generated instructions. Together all the stitches define a complicated surface, called the Lorenz manifold.

The final result consists of 25,511 crochet stitches and took Osinga about 85 hours to complete. However, this wasn't just done for fun. Their work gives insight into how chaos arises and is organised in systems as diverse as chemical reactions, biological networks and even your kitchen mixer.

Hinke Osinga and Bernd Krauskopf with
their crocheted Lorenz manifold

Scientific publications on the Lorenz manifold

Next three crocheted Lorenz manifolds... and more!

  Lorenz manifold by Craig Lazarski   Lorenz manifold by Carolyn Yackel   Lorenz manifold by Leslie Carver
Craig Lazarski Carolyn Yackel Leslie Carver

A bottle of champagne was offered to the first person who would produce another crocheted model of the Lorenz manifold. It only took two weeks before three people had sent emails to announce that they had finished! Please check out the other Lorenz manifolds. If you have finished your crocheted Lorenz manifold, please send a photograph of it!

Media interest

The Press release of 15 December 2004 generated an enormous response. Some highlights are shown here.

Frame from Channel 4 News video,
17 December 2004 Frame from Channel 4 News video,
17 December 2004 Frame from Channel 4 News video,
17 December 2004 Frame from Channel 4 News video,
17 December 2004

TV and Radio

(videos may need to be downloaded and played outside of the browser due to memory constraints)

Newspapers and magazines


Online articles

Geniale Köpfe (in German; help with the translation)
+plus    LiveScience    Science a GoGo    PhysOrg    Scienceline    Math Digest

  The crocheted Lorenz manifold
with white background   The crocheted Lorenz manifold
with black background   Detail of the crocheted Lorenz

Related websites

Copyright © 2005 by Hinke Osinga & Bernd Krauskopf
Last modified: Fri Apr 11 16:40:47 NZST 2014