A new study shows that specialists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have created a device that can read the pages of a book while closed. The researchers applied an algorithm that utilizes Terahertz radiation.
The new imaging system allows scientists to view the first twelve pages of a closed book and interpret and convey the first nine pages. The author of the analysis and a researcher from the MIT says that the Metropolitan Museum in New York already showed interest in their new project because they want to analyze the content of antique books without actually touching them.
This new device could show useful for archaeologists and museums that must handle delicate documents, and antique books that once touched could be damaged.
The invention utilizes Terahertz radiation, the radiation observed between infrared lights and the microwaves. It was proved to be more useful that other similar radiation like sound waves or X-rays, giving a reliable reading. Moreover, the Terahertz radiation could also differentiate between a blank paper and ink paper because it provides more resolution and depth than other similar waves.
The researchers mentioned that, until now, they were capable of reading nine pages of a closed book. All the pages had a single letter printed on them.
The specialists said that the device works by reflecting the terahertz radiation. 20 micrometers deep small air pockets are found between the sheets. The engineering enables the radiation to transmit a signal and jump between every sheet.
The study team generated a terahertz camera which after the radiation is dispersed, catches reflection when it leaps back.
However, the single problem encountered so far by the researchers is that sometimes the radiation jumps between the sheets before reaching the reading sensor. The process forces the scientists to remove the ‘noise’ before receiving the final product which can be read.
The terahertz camera can transform the reflections using the algorithm into images that can present the substance of the pages of the closed book.
The MIT team believes that there are many domains in which the technology can be useful, but because the project is at its first stage, there is still much research needed to ultimately implement the engineering.
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