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Hack-A-Day 2015 Prize DOLPi Submission Video

Hi! DOLPi is a low-cost polarization camera based on the Raspberry Pi.

Like intensity and color, polarization is another property of a light wave.

Humans cannot sense polarization, but many animals like cuttlefish and insects have polarization-sensitive vision that they use for navigation, finding water, and detecting transparent prey.

This is DOLPi – it is completely self-contained and easy to build. In spite of its simplicity, it holds truly awesome power for the development of brand new scientific and commercial applications!

For example, DOLPi’s images can be used to locate landmines, identify cancerous tissues, see underwater, detect invisible pollutants, and who knows – maybe even observe cloaked UFOs!

At the heart of DOLPi is a liquid-crystal panel harvested from a cheap welding-mask filter.

An autocalibration circuit finds the right liquid crystal drive amplitudes to analyze at 0, 45, and 90⁰.

DOLPi’s Python imaging loop takes the polarized images, and then combines them into a single color picture that encodes polarization.

For example, these nine pieces of polarizer film all look the same to a human eye. But they look very different through DOLPi

The polarization angle, degree of polarization, and polarization intensity are encoded in HSV space, making the picture easy to interpret.

It is my hope that DOLPi will open the obscure field of polarization imaging so that fellow enthusiasts will be able to develop game-changing applications across a wide range of fields – spanning all the way from environmental monitoring and medical diagnostics, to security and antiterrorism applications.

 
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