The University of Tokyo is moving one step closer to developing 3D holograms that can be touched with bare hands. Yes, we know you cannot touch light, but the new technology uses a breakthrough ultrasound method called acoustic radiation pressure to create a pressure sensation on a user’s hands which are tracked with two Nintendo Wiimotes.
As the researchers explain, the method doesn’t use any direct contact and so doesn’t dilute the quality of the hologram. The researchers, led by Hiroyuki Shinoda, currently have the technology on display at SIGGRAPH 2009 in New Orleans.
“A retroreflective marker is attached on the tip of user’s middle finger,” the researchers explain on their website. “IR LEDs illuminate the marker and two Wiimotes sense the 3D position of the finger. Owing to this hand-tracking system, the users can handle the floating virtual image with their hands.”
In the video below, the researchers demonstrates a user dribbling a virtual ball, feeling raindrops and a small virtual creature crawling on their palm. This one cool technology that would definitely offer an enhancement in the gaming industry as well as virtually anything.