Scientists at the University of California, Santa Barbara have been working to provide X-ray vision to enable robots to see objects and humans behind thick walls through the use of radio frequency signals.
The patented technology allows users to see the space on the other side and identify not only the presence of occluded objects, but also their position and geometry, without any prior knowledge of the area.
Additionally, it has the potential to classify the material type of each occluded object such as human, metal or wood.
Built into robots, the technology has far-reaching possibilities. These robots can be useful in situations where human access is difficult or risky, and the ability to determine what is in a given occluded area is important, such as search and rescue operations for natural or man-made disasters.
The technology is not limited to robots; it can be implemented on a Wi-Fi-enabled gadget or a Wi-Fi network, researchers said.
Built into an existing network the technology can be used to monitor the presence and location of objects and people throughout a built space, which opens possibilities for catching intruders, or watching over the elderly.