MIT's Microwave Camera Sees Through Walls

MIT's Microwave Camera project can see through walls.


(MIT's microwave camera sees through walls)

Visible light has a wavelength between 390nm and 700nm, while our camera sees between 2.5cm and 4cm (much larger). While classical radar-imaging devices can perform these tasks, they do so with highly complex systems which are out of the reach of the consumer. We introduce a radar imaging architecture which makes imaging at these long wavelengths more accessible, while enabling all of the following:
  • higher resolution imaging
  • all of the electronics constrained to a small 10 x 10 space
  • Fewer detectors necessary
  • Better detection of specular (mirror-like) surfaces
  • Multi-spectral imaging
  • Time-resolved imaging (capturing Microwaves in flight)

The aim of our work is not just to detect objects, but also to form images in 3D. There are many advantages to being able to see how many limbs a person has and how tall they are; not just in what general area they are located. In order to image at such large wavelengths, sensors must cover a very large aperture at a high enough density to sufficiently sample the reflected waves (and prevent aliasing). Classical radar setups utilize hundreds of thousands of sensors to cover a large aperture at an appropriate density.

The future of commercial systems cannot rely on such large setups because they are difficult to produce and handle. Instead of spreading our electronics across the entire aperture, we focus all of our electronics to a 10 x 10 space, and use a large passive reflector to focus the reflected energy to this small area. Our setup enables higher resolution radar imaging by covering a large aperture with a passive-element, and constraining all of the electronics to a small focal plane. This architecture is useful for situations where many electronics are focused to a small area (such as a chip), since all that is necessary to increase the resolution of the device is to introduce a passive lens.

The microwave camera can image at wavelengths which easily penetrate drywall and plywood.

EE 'Doc' Smith imagined a similar idea more than eighty years ago in his 1934 novel Triplanetary:

The silent voice ceased, the watch upon Clio's wrist again became an unobtrusive timepiece, and Costigan, in his solitary cell far below her tower room, turned his peculiarly goggled eyes toward other scenes. In his pockets his hands manipulated tiny controls, and through the lenses of those goggles Costigan's keen and highly-trained eyes studied every concealed detail of mechanism of the great globe, the while he planned what must be done. Finally, he took off the goggles and spoke in a low voice to Bradley, confined in another windowless room across the hall.

"I think I've got dope enough, Captain. I've found out where he put our armor and guns, and I've located all the main leads, controls, and generators. There are no ether-walls around us here, but every door is shielded, and there are guards outside our doors--one to each of us..."

Costigan picked up the projector, again donned his spy-ray goggles, and the two hurried on.
(Read more about the spy ray goggles)

Take a look at four more real-life technologies to see through walls.

Via MIT.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/9/2015)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Surveillance ")

IJOP Integrated Joint Operations Platform China's Minority Report?
'All day long the idiots babbled, imprisoned in their special high-backed chairs...'

Kuri Robot Roams Your Home, Taking Pictures
'Small devices with cameras and sound equipment which could move freely...'

Nuclear Drones Could Fly For Years
'I sent my eyes on their rounds and tended my gallery of one hundred-thirty changing pictures...' - Roger Zelazny, 1966.

China's Drone Fleet Flies In Formation
'Programmed to hang... in a hexagonal grid pattern.' - Neal Stephenson, 1995.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Ontario Starts Guaranteed Minimum Income
'Earned by just being born.'

Is There Life In Outer Space? Will We Recognize It?
'The antennae of the Life Detector atop the OP swept back and forth...'

Space Traumapod For Surgery In Spacecraft
' It was a ... coffin, form-fitted to Nessus himself...'

Tesla Augmented Reality Hypercard
'The hypercard is an avatar of sorts.'

A Space Ship On My Back
''Darn clever, these suits,' he murmured.'

Biomind AI Doctor Mops Floor With Human Doctors
'My aim was just not to lose by too much.' - Human Physician participant.

Fuli Bad Dog Robot Is 'Auspicious Raccoon Dog' Bot
Bad dog, Fuli. Bad dog.

Las Vegas Humans Ready To Strike Over Robots
'A worker replaced by a nubot... had to be compensated.'

You'll Regrow That Limb, One Day
'... forcing the energy transfer which allowed him to regrow his lost fingers.'

Elon Musk Seeks To Create 1941 Heinlein Speedster
'The car surged and lifted, clearing its top by a negligible margin.'

Somnox Sleep Robot - Your Sleepytime Cuddlebot
Science fiction authors are serious about sleep, too.

Real-Life Macau or Ghost In The Shell
Art imitates life imitates art.

Has Climate Change Already Been Solved By Aliens?
'I had explained," said Nessus, "that our civilisation was dying in its own waste heat.'

First 3D Printed Human Corneas From Stem Cells
Just what we need! Lots of spare parts.

VirtualHome: Teaching Robots To Do Chores Around The House
'Just what did I want Flexible Frank to do? - any work a human being does around a house.'

Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) Workshop
SF writers have thought about this since the 19th century.

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.