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UT Dallas researchers seek to imbue your smartphone with X-ray superpowers

Zachary Lutz
April 20, 2012
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If anybody ever told you that the future would be awesome, they were right. A new bit of research has emerged from the University of Texas at Dallas, which describes equipment that may allow people to see through walls -- and if that weren't wild enough, creators of the specialized CMOS imaging hardware believe the same technology could be integrated into our mobile phones. To pull off the feat, the scientists tapped into a portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that exists between microwave and infrared known as the terahertz range. Due to privacy concerns, the equipment is being designed to operate at a distance of no more than four inches, but its creator hypothesizes that the technology will still be useful for finding studs in walls, verifying documents and detecting counterfeit currency. In other words, this brand of x-ray vision isn't exactly on par with Superman's abilities, but it's bound to work better than mail order spectacles from Newark.

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