Scientists in Japan Create Touchable Holograms

December 2, 2015 | Johannes Van Zijl

artist's impression of a hologram of an arm
Photo credit: m_hweldon/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Attention Star Trek fans: Real-life, interactive holograms have arrived!

Japanese scientists from the Utsonomiya University Center for Optical Research have created interactive virtual holograms that can be manipulated by touch.

The latest innovation uses femtosecond laser technology that fires high frequency laser pulses, each lasting one millionth of one billionth of a second — an extremely short amount of time! Thus, the scientists were able to project virtual objects that can respond to touch while being projected.

The new technology could have potentially endless applications if scaled to a larger size and could ultimately contribute to our daily lives, with uses for entertainment, architecture, and medicine. Just use your imagination!

Watch this CCTV video to see the hologram in action:

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