If you’ve ever wondered when the holographic projector that R2-D2 used to deliver Princess Leia’s message would actually be real, that time appears to be now. This new display technology allows for images to be displayed in mid-air, using a rapidly moving laser beam.
Developed by Japan’s Burton, Inc., and based on technologies from AIST and Keio University, this 3D display can display images not just in the air, but underwater too. The system uses “by focusing laser light to produce plasma excitation from the oxygen and nitrogen in the air.” It’s capable of producing about 50,000 dots per second at a frame rate of somewhere around 10-15 fps. While their demonstration uses simple geometric shapes and words, I think they should replace the image with Princess Leia.
I wonder if this technology would fit inside an astromech droid.