The researchers worked in the lab for over a year to develop and patent a small metallic nanoantenna chip that, together with an adapted holography algorithm, could determine the "phase map" of a light beam. "Phase corresponds with the distance light waves have to travel from the object you are looking at to your eye," said Prof. Hanein. "In real objects, our brains know how to interpret phase information so you get a feeling of depth, but when you look at a photograph, you often lose this information so the photographs look flat. Holograms save the phase information, which is the basis of 3-D imagery. This is truly one of the holy grails of visual technology."
According to the researchers, their methodology is the first of its kind to successfully produce high-resolution holographic imagery that can be projected efficiently in any direction.
"We can use this technology to reflect any desired object," said Prof. Scheuer. "Before, scientists were able to produce only basic shapes circles and stripes, for example. We used, as our model, the logo of Tel Aviv University, which has a very specific design, and were able to achieve the best results seen yet."
The key to complex imagery
"This can be used for scientific research, security, medical, engineering, and recreational purposes," said Prof. Scheuer. "Imagine a surgeon, who is forced to replot several CAT-SCAN images to generate an accurate picture. By generating just one holographic image, she could examine symptoms from every angle. Similarly, an architect could draw up a holographic blueprint that he could actually walk through and inspect. The applications are truly endless."
The new technology could also be used to improve laser-based radars used for military purposes as well as advance anti-counterfeiting techniques that safeguard against theft.
"We optimized holograms to the highest resolution and c
|Contact: George Hunka|
American Friends of Tel Aviv University