A spatial light modulator is basically an object which imposes some sort of spatially varied modulation on a light beam. An obvious example would be an overhead light projection. In most cases, this is done with the use of special reflectors or lenses so that the light wave can reflect off of any surface on which it strikes and then bounces back.
A typical light modulator will consist of a collection of mirror particles which are each configured in such a way as to alter the phase of a light wave as it strikes them. For each such mirror particle, the phase variation of the light wave will depend on the configuration of the mirror that it’s attached to. When the light wave imparts an impulse onto one of the mirrors, the electrons which constitute the mirror move, which results in a change in the phase of the light wave. This change is again dependent on the configuration of the mirror. Hence, each time the light imparts an impulse, the light will strike a different reflective surface, which alters the phase of the light wave slightly, depending on the configuration of the mirror.
Spatial light modulators have a number of other applications as well, including for illuminating rooms in construction, or even making tents on military bases. It has also been used in photography to enhance images. You may have seen a light filter on a camera or even the sun’s rays reflected off of a distant mountain. All these effects are achieved by adjusting the phase of the light rays and the duration of the impulses they receive. The resulting image, depending on the nature of the room in question, will be of a different color due to the differing lengths of the wavelengths of the light waves encounter. This allows for more vibrant colors, for example, if the sun’s rays are projected on a blue sky, then the resulting image will be a bright, saturated blue.
A spatial light modulator can also be used to control and vary the intensity of a light source. If a laser were to be shot into a room, say, one containing a red laser, it would change the color of the light emitted as a result of the intensity of the laser shot. The effect, again, is dependent on the configuration of the mirror that receives the laser signal. In this case, if you wish to increase the intensity of the laser, you simply need to alter the configuration of the mirror so that it will focus the laser light onto a different portion of the room, thereby increasing the light source’s intensity.
In addition to affecting the intensity of a light wave, a Spatial Light Modulator can also alter its frequency. Frequencies affect how the light behaves, for instance, in colorizing visible light. To alter its frequency, all you have to do is adjust the spacer, which changes the phase of the light coming into the room from the far end.
To use a Spatial Light Modulator in your home or office, you should install one in each room. It is typically used to make rooms appear larger by creating the illusion of a greater number of objects in a given area. The Spatial Light Modulator also works well to soften the look of a room so you can more easily use it as a decorator’s tool. By changing the direction of the light wave from the far end to the near end of a given space, you can make a room seem to open up to you or the people who are in your home. For instance, if you want a small room to feel like a large space, then by angling the Spatial Light Modulator’s beam downward, the effect is much like putting a bookshelf between the walls.