Applied Physics

Video Holography

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Science  19 Aug 2011:
Vol. 333, Issue 6045, pp. 920
DOI: 10.1126/science.333.6045.920-d

A hologram captures and stores the interference patterns created when coherent light is scattered from an object. As such, holograms store sufficient information to enable reconstruction of a true three-dimensional (3D) representation of the object that can be rotated and viewed from any direction. In contrast, the 3D displays currently becoming more popular in consumer electronics and cinemas differ in that they provide a sense of depth but give the same perspective; that is, a viewer watching a 3D film from one side of the room sees the same 3D image as someone watching from the other side. Holographic displays would provide both a sense of depth and a different perspective. However, the capture, processing, and storage of holograms and their reconstruction are computationally intensive. Tsang et al. have developed a method that allows holograms to be captured and processed at up to 40 frames per second, good enough for video-rate holographic imaging. The prospect of a holographic video display for true-to-life 3D video conferencing, or, more practically, real-time medical imaging, may not be too far off.

Opt. Express 19, 15205 (2011).

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