[dropcap]T[/dropcap]Technology is advancing faster than any of us can keep track. It’s about time holograms stop being a thing of the future and become a thing of the present. Nowadays, you can buy devices that project holograms from your own smartphones. There are even ways to project a live, full-sized hologram of a person. The video above shows you just how you can DIY your own hologram projector. Now that we know holograms are finally here to stay, we are left wondering how this is possible. A hologram is simply a 3d image caused by the interaction of lasers. Laser light is exactly what makes a hologram possible. Lasers are more concentrated and coherent light sources that can be split up to construct a hologram.

By reflecting a laser on a mirror and using a reference object (the object you want to make a hologram of) you can split the laser and rejoin the beams to imitate the reference object. Holograms show exactly how light would interact with the real object. This is what makes them look realistic and solid when in reality it is just beams of light.

There are many real-world applications for holograms besides entertainment. Some applications include:

Anti counterfeiting in credit cards and currency (the small square hologram is difficult to copy)

Biomedical applications (viewing a detailed hologram of an organ during surgery)

Erasable holograms (used for non-destructive testing and inspection)

Holographic scanners (reading bar codes)

Routine non-destructive inspections can prove to be time-consuming and no one method can provide a complete inspection. Currently, Holographic Non-Destructive Testing (HNDT) is a technique for conducting inspections. This technique works by recording the light reflected off a component being inspected while the component is put under small stress (like vibrations). Disruptions in the light patterns point to damage in the component very precisely. This method of testing is used across industries, including aviation, automotive, and energy.

The success of holography in nondestructive testing encourages scientists and engineers to dive in further in this type of photography. Real-time, realistic 3D Holograms have been marketed for use in routine non-destructive testing. Even though the technology has not reached this point, it is still an exciting technological development to look out for. Right now, holograms are still very rare to find and only a few devices can project them. Most of our smartphones and watches are not capable of projecting them either. As time passes and the technology advances they will become a normal part of our technological lives.

Non-destructive inspections of important industrial structures and components can be made faster, more comprehensive, and effective through the use of holograms. Until then, it is still essential to have the right tools to conduct industrial inspections. Remote Visual Inspection is an excellent option, in the form of articulating video borescopes. These tools help you visualize inside engines, turbines, and components.

We recommend the MC1 Series for your routine maintenance needs. The MC1 Series from SPI articulates 360° with a medical grade camera tip, giving you a full view inside hard to reach places. LED lights surrounding the camera illuminate the inspected components so you can see very small signs of damage and wear. This will make your inspections easier and simply better.