Time-shared 3D
Time-sharing, or time-sequenced, 3D displays form one of major categories into which 3D display systems may be divided (for information about other 3D technologies, please see this link). Rather than permanently designating groups of pixels within the active image matrix to individual perspective views, as in space-shared systems (further details on these systems can be found here), time-sequenced 3D displays rely on a special configuration of optical components that allows quickly steering the light output from the entire image matrix successively into directions corresponding to individual perspective views. This must be done sufficiently fast to avoid visible flickering similar to that observed in old TV sets and monitors, which have slow refresh rate.

At present, there are two general types of 3D time-sequenced display systems that seem to offer a potential for a practical implementation. The first of them, historically known earlier, is based on illumination of the display device by light beams at different angles corresponding to the view directions of the demonstrated 3D image. This approach requires an array of linear (bar-shaped) light sources (whose number matches that of perspective views) arranged behind the screen and toggled on and off in sync with the perspective view images successively shown on the screen, or such single light source swept in the horizontal direction. The screen used in this configuration must have a fast refresh rate proportional to the number of 3D perspectives. Although device prototypes based on similar technologies have been successfully demonstrated, this approach makes it necessary to use high-speed and high-resolution spatial light modulators having large physical dimensions (this technology is as yet unavailable) or special optical configurations with significant light losses. Such displays also have inherently large footprint, which considerably reduces their practical appeal.

The other type of time-multiplexed systems relies on steering the light after it was modulated by the screen into appropriate angles, as opposed to the above-described approach where it is the illumination beams before the screen that are projected in different directions. Systems of this second type use arrays of optical elements in front of the screen, whose parameters are continuously adjusted (for example, by mechanical displacement) in order to steer the light output into the angle corresponding to the perspective view shown on the screen at a given moment.

Zecotek’s ground-breaking patented 3D display technology makes use of time-sequenced 3D principle and is based on dynamic lens array system and fast flat image display devices. It enjoys the all advantages of time-sequenced 3D displays and is not in itself dependent on a particular display technology (i.e. back-projection or direct-view). More detailed information about Zecotek patented 3D display technology can be found here.

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