Image courtesy of the University of Texas
The Samsung Galaxy S4 and iPhone 6 might end up having the ability to see through walls with their cameras, according to a new report.
A research team at the University of Texas in Dallas has tapped into an unused range in the electromagnetic spectrum that could give smartphones this ability.
"We've created approaches that open a previously untapped portion of the electromagnetic spectrum for consumer use and life saving medical applications," said Dr. Kenneth O, professor of electrical engineering at UT Dallas.
This approach will allow images to be created with signals in the terahertz range without having to use several lenses inside a device.
When combined with CMOS (Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor) technology, this ability could potentially be available on consumer devices such as computers, smartphones, and tablets.
"CMOS is affordable and can be used to make lots of chips," said Dr. O. "The combination of CMOS and terahertz means you could put this chip and a transmitter on the back of a cellphone, turning it into a device carried in your pocket that can see through objects."
Consumers would be able to use this technology in their cellphones to find studs in walls, or for the authentication of specific documents. Businesses would also be able to use it to find counterfeit money.
Terahertz can also be used for medical purposes as it can detect cancer tumors, diagnose diseases through breath analysis, and monitor the amount of toxins in the air.
"There are all kinds of things you could be able to do that we just haven't yet thought about," he continued.
And being that the iPhone and the Galaxy S lines are the top two smartphones in the market, they would probably be the first to receive this technology. Both the Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5S or 6 could be able to see through walls when they are released. However, it will probably take a little bit longer for consumers to get their hands on this groundbreaking technology.