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A multi-planar volumetric display Disclosure Number: IPCOM000030858D
Publication Date: 2004-Aug-30
Document File: 2 page(s) / 36K

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A multi-planar volumetric display. ID696143


Volumetric displays can be considered to be the most realistic three-dimensional displays. In these displays real three-dimensional objects can be drawn in a certain volume. In general, volumetric displays can be devised in two classes. Firstly, there are displays that are able to generate a pixel at an arbitrary position in some volume. For instance, such a display might consist of a transparent crystal in which by means of up-conversion light is generated.

Secondly, a volumetric display can be created by generating several planes behind each other. An example of such a display uses a stack of switchable diffusers to generate a "moving projection plane". Subsequently different planes are brought into a scattering state while the remainder of the planes are translucent. At the same time, the video content of the fast projector is adapted to the scattering plane. Information that needs to be drawn between two planes can be approximated by distribution of the information on the two neighboring planes. If the distance between the planes is sufficiently small the human brain tends to think that there is a continuous depth, while in practice it consists of discrete planes only. Switchable diffusers however are expensive components and a fast projector is not commercially available.

A promising kind of display that creates several planes uses a stack of semi- transparent mirrors to create several planes, such that information that lies between two different planes can be distributed, suggesting a continuous depth. Such a volumetric display has e.g. a binary tree-like structure of semi-transparent mirrors, 1,2,3,4 (Figure 1). In the example of Figure 1 four pictures a,b,c,d, are provided, that correspond to four different planes respectively. The display has a small tilt-angle alpha, with respect to the semi-transparent mirrors, such that there is a path difference for the light coming from the four pictures. The tilt-angle determines the distance between the planes. If this angle is zero the distance from all four pictures to the viewer is essentially the same. In alternat...