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Researchers identify free-flowing aerosol particles using holograms, lasers

Holographic images of free-flowing air particles may help climate change and biological weapons watchdogs better monitor the atmosphere, according to a recent study. Previously, researchers could not objectively define free-floating aerosol particles because merely capturing a particle and looking at it under a microscope could change its physical shape or size. Now, they can bounce light waves off the particle and measure the deflection. The method used in the study takes holographic images of particles as they float through the air using two overlapping lasers, one red and one green. The green laser is the traditional method that can be used to measure the light deflection; by providing the red laser, they also get a 3-D image that can subjectively account for a variety of particle shapes.

Visit Website | Image credit: Matthew Berg/Kansas State University