World's Highest-Resolution Projector

May 26, 2009

If one were to stack 16 of the world's best high-definition projectors side-by-side (and on top of each other), the combined image projected would contain 33 megapixels. This is the resolution achieved by the world's highest-resolution projector, soon to be unveiled by the company Evans & Sutherland (E&S) of Salt Lake City, Utah.

Most projectors contain two-dimensional arrays of pixels, tic-tac-toe arrangements of tiny microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) devices that each light up with a particular color. Because fabricating 33 million of these devices is a tricky endeavor, the E&S only uses a single column of 4,000 pixels, powered by a beam of light. This rapidly-changing vertical stripe of colors is swept across a screen faster than the eye can see, so spectators see the illusion of a projected 2-D image.

To create this projector, twice the resolution of any that currently exists, the company had to develop powerful fiber lasers. These lasers, discussed in Forrest Williams' talk at the 2009 CLEO/IQEC conference, may have uses for other projects, such as making anti-counterfeit identifiers or projecting artificial stars into the night sky that can be used to calibrate astronomical instruments.

The projector, which creates a 2:1 image twice as wide as it is high, will be marketed to planetariums, simulations, and training companies that currently wire multiple projectors together to display large images.

The 2009 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics/International Quantum Electronics Conference (CLEO/IQEC) runs from May 31 to June 5 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore.

Provided by Optical Society of America (news : web)

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User comments : 2

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kerry
not rated yet May 26, 2009
When do we get to watch films on this IMAX-on-steroids projector..? =)
fastpathguru
not rated yet May 27, 2009
Ask Sony. They licensed (exclusively) the Grated Light Valve technology from Silicon Machines nearly a decade ago for video projection applications, and just sat on it. The tech is better than anything on the market, the only hitch is that it requires high quality lasers as a light source.

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