Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Holographic Television May Be Coming Sooner Than We Think

Holographic imagery, while successfully demonstrated decades ago, is taking a long time to become technically and commercially viable so people have understandably become skeptical about claims for holographic television appearing any time soon. Although claims for holographic TV have long been touted as the next big thing in the distant future, a Leuven, Belgium-based R&D lab for nanoelectronics has come up with a process that might bring holographic images closer to realtime (left). They already have images approaching the futuristic holography popularized in the Star Wars movies (right).

Researchers believe that holographic images are the answer to resolving the eye strain and headaches that go along with present-day 3-D viewing. The research lab Imec, says “Holographic visualization promises to offer a natural 3-D experience for multiple viewers, without the undesirable side-effects of current 3D stereoscopic visualization (uncomfortable glasses, strained eyes, fatiguing experience).” They hope to construct the first, proof-of-concept moving structures by mid-2012.

Researchers at MIT have also said they are closing in on holographic TV by building a system with a refresh rate of 15 frames per second, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) completed a five-year project called “Urban Photonic Sandtable Display” that creates realtime, color, 360-degree 3-D holographic displays.

Although the technology is developed enough for scientists to know holographic TV is possible if not inevitable, there are many details to be worked out concerning things like frame rates, angle of viewing, resolution and color-correction.

Click on the video below to see the future of holographic television.

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