A team of graduates at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has developed transparent displays that can be applied as a thin plastic coasting to any piece of glass, including windows and lenses.

Projectors can then project images onto the displays, which create a thin projector screen on the glass surface without the need for expensive screen technology or bulky equipment.

The coating works using nanoparticles, which are embedded into the transparent material and are tuned to scatter certain wavelengths, colours or lights in order to display the selected moving image.

The new system improves upon previous 'heads-up' displays, which require users to be standing at a certain angle to be able to see the image. Instead, MIT's latest innovation allows images to be seen from a wide range of angles and does so without significantly altering the look of the surface.

MIT Professor Marin Soljačić, said: "The glass will look almost perfectly transparent because most light is not of that precise wavelength."

According to Professor Soljačić, the system, which is described in a paper published in the Nature Communications journal this week, requires a great deal of further work before it is optimised and ready to be used commercially.