Scientists Created A “Hologram” That You Can Feel and Hear Using Ultrasound Waves

By: | December 28th, 2019

Floating butterfly (landscape) created by the Multimodal Acoustic Trap Display developed at the University of Sussex Credit: Eimontas Jankauskis

In a big breakthrough, researchers at the University of Sussex have created animated 3D holograms. These holograms can not only be seen from any angle, you can even touch them. You can experience these 3D representations like a butterfly or an emoji without the need of any external device like a virtual reality headset.

Researchers’ call their work a 3D projection. It involves very light floating material manipulated using ultrasound waves. 

They published a paper on their device, which they call the Multimodal Acoustic Trap Display (MATD).

Ryuji Hirayama, lead author of the new study, said, “Our new technology takes inspiration from old TVs which use a single color beam scanning along the screen so quickly that your brain registers it as a single image,”

Science behind:

Scientists created 3D moving image by using a tiny polystyrene ball and an array of small speakers. Small speakers were used to trap particles, to generate sounds, and to generate tactile feedback. Since you can see, hear and touch this hologram, it seems like a real object.

Ryuji Hirayama, said, “Even if not audible to us, ultrasound is still a mechanical wave and it carries energy through the air. Our system directs and focuses this energy, which can then stimulate your skin to feel content,”

“The feeling of the tactile sensation is like a gently spraying your hand with pressurized air.”

The technology isn’t limited just for entertainment, but researchers foresee their prototype could find other useful uses from computing to biomedicine.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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