The submarine periscope may soon become obsolete, thanks to a new technology developed at the Technion, Haaretz reported on Wednesday.
The “virtual periscope” — also known as “Stella Maris” (Stellar Marine Refractive Imaging Sensor) enables viewing of above-surface and airborne objects from underwater. The imaging system adapts astronomy techniques to counter blurring and distortion caused by water-surface waves when using a submerged camera.
“When the water surface is wavy, sun-rays refract according to the waves and project onto the solar image plane,” explains Associate Professor Yoav Schechner, of the Technion Department of Electrical Engineering. “With the pinhole array, we obtain an array of tiny solar images on the diffuser.”
Potential applications of the periscope include marine biology research, where viewing and imaging both beneath and above the waves simultaneously is important.