Sound waves are used to float small beads & # 39;

For the first time, researchers have moved small balls through the air in a controlled manner, with speeds of up to 30 inches (80 cm) per second.

Scientists hover objects by simply pointing at them: sound waves are used for the first time to control the movements of small bullets through the air

  • Scientists can now allow objects to float by simply pointing them out – at least, it seems
  • For the first time, they have moved beads through the air in a controlled manner
  • They did this by creating ultrasonic waves, between which the ball floats

Phoebe Weston for Mailonline

The Force is a supernatural force used by Anakin Skywalker and other Jedi to manipulate objects in the fictional universe of Star Wars.

However, scientists can now let objects hover by simply pointing them out – at least, it seems.

For the first time, researchers have moved small pellets through the air in a controlled manner, with speeds of up to 30 inches (80 cm) per second.

They did this by creating two rays of ultrasonic waves, between which the ball floats.

Researchers from the University of Bayreuth in Germany presented their floating ball at a conference in Tokyo.

The interactive system relies on two horizontal plates, placed together at a distance of about 20 cm from each other.

These produce ultrasound waves from above and below, which means that particles located in the space between the two plates are subjected to ultrasonic waves emanating from opposite directions.

Small objects – in this case small plastic beads – can float in the air under these conditions.

If the phases of the acoustic waves in this ultrasonic space are even slightly modified, it is possible to set these beads in motion.

The new device, called a LeviCursor, uses this phenomenon to accurately control the movement of the beads.

Scientists carried an optical marker (or pointer) on one fingertip.

They were able to modify the three-dimensional field of ultrasonic waves with the help of this pointer, which in turn moved the plastic beads.

For the first time, researchers have moved small balls through the air in a controlled manner, with speeds of up to 30 inches (80 cm) per second.

For the first time, researchers have moved small balls through the air in a controlled manner, with speeds of up to 30 inches (80 cm) per second.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

The interactive system relies on two horizontal plates, placed together at a distance of about 20 cm from each other.

These produce ultrasound waves from above and below, which means that particles located in the space between the two plates are subjected to ultrasonic waves emanating from opposite directions.

Small objects – in this case small plastic beads – can float in the air under these conditions.

If the phases of the acoustic waves in this ultrasonic space are even slightly modified, it is possible to set these beads in motion.

The new device, called a LeviCursor, uses this phenomenon to accurately control the movement of the beads.

Scientists carried an optical marker (or pointer) on one fingertip.

They were able to modify the three-dimensional field of ultrasonic waves with the help of this pointer, which in turn moved the plastic beads.

Scientists can move the small beads in three dimensions parallel to the finger without actually touching them.

Scientists can move the small beads in three dimensions parallel to the finger without actually touching them.

The balls move at the same time as the fingertip, without any delay time.

It does not move like a series of small steps, but continuously, just like the movements of the fingertip.

Scientists can move the ball at speeds of up to 31 inches (80 cm) per second.

Viktorija Paneva is a researcher at the chair Serious Games, which presented the findings at the ACM International Conference on Interactive Surfaces and Spaces in Tokyo.

"Visitors of the scientific community were very impressed with how far we have already highlighted the physical foundations of the ultrasound-controlled levitation of objects", said Dr. Paneva.

& # 39; Our goal is to further refine this technology in the coming years.

& # 39; In particular, we try to achieve even higher speeds and accelerations and create entire virtual objects from floating particles.

Professor Jörg Müller, head of the Bayreuth research team, said: "We can not really envisage all possible applications of this technology today.

Scientists carried an optical marker on one fingertip. They were able to modify the three-dimensional field of ultrasonic waves with the help of this pointer, which in turn moved the plastic beads

Scientists carried an optical marker on one fingertip. They were able to modify the three-dimensional field of ultrasonic waves with the help of this pointer, which in turn moved the plastic beads

Scientists carried an optical marker on one fingertip. They were able to modify the three-dimensional field of ultrasonic waves with the help of this pointer, which in turn moved the plastic beads

But let us imagine that we are capable of regulating precisely the very rapid movement of many, extremely small particles at micron level: in that case, larger objects composed of these particles can be to transform an instant into other objects.

In this way, for example, unimaginable surprise effects can be achieved in movies or theater performances, "he said.

Yet the goals of the research go even further.

It is our view that the computer of the future is not only on a desk or is tucked away in a mobile phone, but that the entire room we are in will be used as a user interface. " .

& # 39; In this scenario, the physical and the virtual world would absolutely seamlessly connect to each other & # 39 ;.

http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js .