Abstract

Proposed is a laser projection display system that uses an electronically controlled variable focus lens (ECVFL) to achieve sharp and in-focus image projection over multi-distance three-dimensional (3D) conformal screens. The system also functions as an embedded distance sensor that enables 3D mapping of the multi-level screen platform before the desired laser scanned beam focused/defocused projected spot sizes are matched to the different localized screen distances on the 3D screen. Compared to conventional laser scanning and spatial light modulator (SLM) based projection systems, the proposed design offers in-focus non-distorted projection over a multi-distance screen zone with varying depths. An experimental projection system for a screen depth variation of 65 cm is demonstrated using a 633 nm laser beam, 3 KHz scan speed galvo-scanning mirrors, and a liquid-based ECVFL. As a basic demonstration, an in-house developed MATLAB based graphic user interface is deployed to work along with the laser projection display, enabling user inputs like text strings or predefined image projection. The user can specify projection screen distance, scanned laser linewidth, projected text font size, projected image dimensions, and laser scanning rate. Projected images are shown highlighting the 3D control capabilities of the display, including the production of a non-distorted image onto two-depths versus a distorted image via dominant prior-art projection methods.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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