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Brits invent Star Trek tractor beam
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Old 7th December 2015, 11:04   #1
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Default Brits invent Star Trek tractor beam

British researchers have built a sonic tractor beams that can lift and move objects using sound.

Boffins from the University of Bristol and Sussex,teamed up with Ultrahaptics, a spin-off set up by Sussex Professor of Informatics, Sriram Subramanian. The technology, used high-amplitude soundwaves to generate an acoustic hologram that can pick up and move small objects.

According to the popular science magazine Nature Communications the device allows the manipulation of small spherical objects in mid-air by individually controlling 64 miniature loudspeakers to generate the acoustic hologram without physical contact.

The speakers are controlled at a frequency of 40 kilohertz creating high-pitched and high-intensity sound waves to levitate spherical, expanded polystyrene beads of up to 4 millimeters in diameter.

The tractor beam surrounds the balls with high-intensity sound to create a force field that can keep the beads in place, move them or rotate them. It has been dubbed an acoustic hologram, which sounds like a good name for a 1970ís jazz band.
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