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Superpower: X-Ray Vision

The ability to see through walls and other opaque objects in certain places under digital surveillance

Published onNov 04, 2019
Superpower: X-Ray Vision

Superpower: X-Ray Vision

X-ray vision is a superpower to see through opaque objects which is equipped by Superman and various other superhero characters in fictions. A common usage in superhero fighting is to detect the activities of enemies and figure out the layout of the space behind a wall or a barrier. Although the means of prototyping described below does not offer the literal X-Ray that can penetrate anything, nor to offer the ability directly to a person’s eyeballs, it functions through digital technologies to see through opaque objects in specific places.

Essential tools

Pervasive cameras of all kind in the place;


3D Scanning, modeling, and real-time rendering;

Augmented reality

Conditions and Building

The first premise is the pervasive cameras that can be found in an urban environment which include traffic cameras on streets, security cameras in public buildings and homes for monitoring, cameras for automobile data recorders, cameras on phones and laptops. These cameras pointing at different angles can collectively portray a comprehensive image of a place. When scenes they frame and GPS data of their positions are properly collected and processed under the advanced 3D scanning technology, they can generate a 3D digital model of the place with movements rendered as real-time animation of people and objects in the place.

An X-Ray Vision can be made possible through a device that can hack into every camera in a place, generate a 3D digital model with real-time animation of movements, and use the GPS info of the model to project the animation onto the place of actual coordinate through augmented reality. This device can be made as a pair of glass, a contact lens, or a phone app.


When the owner of X-ray vision glasses stands outside of a room and wants to know what happens inside, he or she can initiate the device to search for cameras in the room. The glasses successfully hack into a security camera on the ceiling, the camera of a phone held by a subject, one on a tablet facing the ceiling, and one on a desktop computer at a corner of the room. As the layout of the room and movements of subjects are scanned, modeled, and animated instantly, the AR program of glasses overlaps the animation onto the actual objects of the room. What the owner see through the glasses on the wall is a digital rendering of the room and 2 animated subjects inside the room.

Ability to see through walls and other opaque objects in certain places

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