Post edited 12:43 pm – January 23, 2013 by admin
Edgerton 2.0? I never thought I would see an actual wave of light but I think I have. In a talk building upon previous work he and other researchers had done(1), MIT professor Ramesh Raskar gave a talk at Carnegie Mellon University recently. Much to my surprise, there are specialized cameras, maybe imaging devices is a more accurate way to phrase it, that have shutter speeds so high, they can freeze light motion in what visually seems like a strobe effect after much computer processing.
"light takes a finite amount of time to travel from one scene point to the other. Recent advances in ultra-high speed imaging have made it possible to sample light as it travels 0.3 millimeter in 1 picosecond."(1) A picosecond is one trillionth of a second. An image of the light wave from Raskar's new work is below:
I wasn't sure what I was seeing and I contacted professor Raskar and his text reply was "this is [the] wave of light measured at 1ps" which again is amazing. Yes, they shot a 5mW laser through a Coke bottle (plastic, I think) to get this.
(1) Looking Around the Corner using Transient Imaging, Ahmend Kirmani‡ 1,Tyler Hutchison 1, James Davis † 2, and Ramesh Raskar ‡ 1 MIT Media Laboratory 2 UC Santa Cruz, page 1.