Touchable Holography: New projector lets you "touch" 3D objects with your hands (video)


Here’s some more info on a Sci-Fi dream come true: As if looking at floating images in free space produced by mid-air displays isn’t cool enough, a research team from the University of Tokyo now makes it possible to even touch (kind of) those images with a newly developed projector system.

The so-called Touch Holography is essentially made of three parts: Provision Interactive Technologies’ Holo display, two Wii remote controls to track your hands in front of the display and a tactile display that uses ultrasound to provide tactile sensation onto your hand.

The Holo display creates an image (of a small ball, for example) that floats 30cm away from the display. As the image is essentially light, you’ll obviously fail to touch the ball. The Touch Holography uses the Wiimote’s infrared camera to track the position of your hand so that the tactile display can radiate ultrasound to the right spot, making you feel you actually touch the object.

This is just awesome. The researchers say their system could be used for developing high-end video games or in 3D CAD.

Watch the video for a Touch Holography demo. Don’t miss the chance to try the system out yourself if you can make it to SIGGRAPH 2009 in New Orleans.

Via Pink Tentacle