Using surface acoustic waves to control light's angle and color composition, BYU and MIT researchers open door to inexpensive holographic video displays
Holographic video displays, featuring three-dimensional images, are about to "go large" and become a lot more affordable at the same time, thanks to the work of a team of Brigham Young University (BYU) researchers and their collaborators at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
It's all about manipulating light. Three of the primary methods include: reflection, refraction and diffraction. In this case, diffraction is the key, and essentially enables lines -- almost any type -- to bend and filter light.
In the journal Review of Scientific Instruments, from AIP Publishing, the team reports using surface acoustic waves as a dynamic pattern of lines to control light's angle and color composition.
How does it work? The magic happens on the surface of a special crystal called lithium niobate (LiNbO3), which boasts excellent optical properties. Beneath the surface of the LiNbO3, microscopic channels, or "waveguides," are created to confine light passing through. A metal electrode is then deposited onto each waveguide, which can produce surface acoustic waves.
The resulting frequency division of color enables a new type of color display. This means that "for a wavelength display, we don't need to rely on color filter wheels or dedicated red and blue pixels," explained Daniel E. Smalley, assistant professor of electrical engineering at BYU, who first reported an advance in this realm in Nature in 2013, while he was a graduate student working at MIT with his advisor V. Michael Bove.
Instead of a color wheel, any color combination is possible with their approach simply by altering the frequency of the signal sent to the "white waveguide pixel." In other words, Smalley said, "we can color the output of our display by 'coloring' the frequencies of the drive signal."
"As a bonus, this interaction also rotates the polarization of the signal light so that we can use a polarizer to eliminate any noise in the system," he added.
In terms of applications, the team's technology adapts and combines techniques from telecom and integrated optics in a way that makes it much less expensive than previous approaches. "We can use this technology to make simple and inexpensive color waveguide displays -- including inexpensive holographic video displays," Smalley pointed out. "This can drop the cost of a holographic video display from tens of thousands of dollars to less than a thousand."
Holograms are meant to be large. Now that there's a simple and inexpensive color display technology, Smalley and colleagues are working on ways to use it to create large holographic video displays -- on the scale of room-sized displays.
The article, "Frequency Division Color Characterization Apparatus for Anisotropic Leaky Mode Light Modulators," is authored by Andre Henrie, Benjamin Haymore, and Daniel E. Smalley. It appears in the journal Review of Scientific Instruments on February 3, 2015 (DOI: 10.1063/1.4906329). After that date, it can be accessed at: http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip/journal/rsi/86/2/10.1063/1.4906329
ABOUT THE JOURNAL
The journal Review of Scientific Instruments, which is produced by AIP Publishing, presents innovation in instrumentation and methods across disciplines. See: http://rsi.aip.org/
Jason Socrates Bardi
Jason Socrates Bardi | newswise
NASA spacecraft investigate clues in radiation belts
28.03.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Researchers create artificial materials atom-by-atom
28.03.2017 | Aalto University
The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.
To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
28.03.2017 | Life Sciences
28.03.2017 | Information Technology
28.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy