True Three Dimensional Display For Medical Telepresence

Period of Performance: 03/01/2009 - 02/28/2011


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Third Dimension Technologies
1020 Solway Schol Rd Ste 104
Knoxville, TN 37931
Principal Investigator


DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The goal of this Phase II SBIR project is to develop and build an Engineering Demonstration version of a unique and innovative truly three-dimensional (3D) display for use with 3D Medical data and in Medical Telepresence applications. There are presently many pseudo-3D displays - generally stereoscopic/two-view, or projection of one plane at a time on to a volume display, or requiring glasses/goggles. These displays all suffer from various problems, and are generally not very satisfactory in use. A truly 3-D display (move your head - see something different) would tremendously improve remote (telepresence) robotic surgery, medical teaching, diagnosis, and sharing of three-dimensional kinds of medical data (CT scans, MRI scans, PET scans, acoustic scans, . . .) either at the instrument or between networked sites. The proposed 3D display uses broadband illumination ("white light", not laser) so that there are no questions about eye-safety of the device. The proposed research has the goal of producing a compact, cost-effective, true 3D display projector. The Phase I SBIR feasibility project has successfully demonstrated two full-color angular-slice channels of such a 3D display. This device will in its many-channel version not only present a no-goggles high-resolution different view to each eye (stereopsis - one requirement for true 3D), but will also have parallax or look-around - when a viewer moves her head or moves to a different position she will see something different - just like the real world. The state of the art in electro-optic components, illumination sources, and computational speed has advanced to the point that it is now feasible to create a truly 3D display. A Third Dimension Technologies Phase I project has shown both theoretically and experimentally that the concepts of holographic stereography (which uses film to simultaneously display many views of an object for static true 3D) can be translated into the electronic age. Digital components and a holographic optical element combine many Angular Slice channels into a true 3D view. This Phase II SBIR project will build on the theoretical and experimental results from the Phase I project to develop and construct the hardware and software for at least 20 channels of an Angular Slice True 3D Display.