Antycip Implements Yview at Teesside University
Antycip integrates its Yview virtual reality solution using Christie Mirages projectors
Oxford, United Kingdom, 22nd July, 2009 – Antycip Simulation Ltd, a subsidiary of ST Electronics (Training & Simulation Systems) Pte Ltd, today announced that it has integrated its Yview solution for Teesside University using Christie Mirage projectors. Teesside University has created a new visualisation environment at its campus in Middlesbrough -United Kingdom, drawing on Antycip Simulation’s Yview, a customisable Cave™-like virtual reality system from Antycip Simulation. The Yview products family includes immersive projection solutions that are modular and customisable.
Situated within the £10m Innovation Building, the home of the School of Science & Technology, Antycip Simulation has installed four Christie Mirage S+6K mission critical stereoscopic projectors to fire onto the new Yview. Christie projection and new technologies help boost the university’s research programme.
The integration replaces the custom-built ‘Hemispherium’, a 6-metre dome, which was built when the University’s Virtual Reality Centre was constructed in 1997, and installed with a Silicon Graphics ONYX engine. This was decommissioned two years ago as the installation had required seven projectors and was considered to be insufficiently bright.
Fred Charles, the School of Computing’s Principal Lecturer in Visualisation, had specified the tender requirements for both the structure and the computer system. Antycip Simulation was awarded the tender and Charles then worked with Antycip Simulation’s engineer Marc Lechalupé to achieve the school’s objectives.
“We disregarded very quickly the traditional VR systems as they are overly expensive nowadays. Antycip Simulation was the only VR system integrator who was willing to build the system to our requirements and limited budget. They took on the project management and full on-site integration,” said Charles.
Gaël Ramaen, Antycip Simulation’s European Marketing Development Manager, confirms that, “the Yview was initially positioned with entry level 3D projectors, which would eventually require upgrading. Our proposal then took into consideration the challenges the University faced; limited space and a budget constraint. With this new upgraded solution, Teesside University can now better meet their future aspirations.”
TEESSIDE UNIVERSITY PROJECT
Few projector brands would be able to deliver the level of high-end projection required. The first version of this platform was deliberately created with lesser-quality projectors with a view to eventually upgrading to Christie’s SXGA+ 6000 ANSI lumens projectors. After a demonstration of the system in-situ, Teesside University selected Christie’s projectors. The four stand-mounted projectors fire onto the specialist screen surfaces, with the floor projector refracting the beam down onto the 3m x 3m base via a large overhead mirror. The brighter and higher resolution projectors enabled details in the simulation environments that had not been visible before — eg. cracks in the terrains where the modelling needed more attention.
Antycip Simulation’s Yview VR solution also affords far more useable net space than the old Hemispherium, allowing up to six people to experience fully-immersive 3D virtual environments at the same time. The rear projection onto flat screens is fairly standard as it does not require complex optical correction and image blending as required when displaying onto curved surfaces, such as onto the old Hemispherium. Yview allows for full user interaction with the 3D virtual environment, whereas the old Hemispherium was only limited to a single user with limited means of interaction.
As the computer system configuration is standard in terms of the architecture (server/clients), it is possible to write software to extend from single projection to multi-projection graphics engines with limited development costs. The essential piece of hardware enabling this is the ORAD dedicated graphics generator which allows the combination of the graphics output cards.
Control is from a PC cluster composed of eight PC clients where each one runs a full version of the visualisation engine. However, the virtual camera for each PC is calculated and offset (position and orientation) based on the eye it is rendering and the screen it is displayed onto. The resolution of the final stereoscopic image is 1400 x 1050 at 110Hz, therefore each eye is rendered at 55Hz. The PCs are genlocked and synchronised, with both the projectors and the emitters for the shutter glasses.
Jean-Luc Lugrin, Senior Lecturer from the School of Computing, confirmed that the project had been realised as a result of the ALTERNE project — an EU funded research project on Alternative Realities in Networked Environments. On this project, the University had collaborated closely with CLARTE, a French institution based in Laval, France. In Laval, CLARTE uses a larger version of the CAVE™-like solution.
Teesside’s research lab also specialises in the field of Interactive Storytelling, a major endeavour by the university to develop new media to offer a radically new user experience, with a potential to revolutionise digital entertainment. This covers a varied spectrum of paradigms from a Holodeck-like experience, which Antycip Simulation’s Yview installation supports, to interactive films, where the spectator can influence the unfolding of the story.
Teesside’s research lab is presently coordinating an EU funded research project on Interactive Storytelling, called IRIS. Built with the help of University funding, the new facility will be primarily used for research.
More info at www.antycipsimulation.com
Antycip Simulation, a subsidiary of ST Electronics (Training & Simulation Systems) Pte Ltd., is the European leader in the distribution of virtual reality software tools and integration of innovative projection solutions. The company also provides a wide range of simulation and training software tools and engineering services. With over 10 years of presence in virtual reality, visualisation, simulation and training, Antycip Simulation has regional offices in France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, Italy and Spain. Please visit www.antycipsimulation.com.
ST Electronics (Training & Simulation Systems), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Singapore Technologies Electronics Limited, develops, manufactures and markets advanced computer graphic software and solutions for simulation, animation, games and edutainment applications. It applies leading edge technologies and design methodologies to meet the stringent requirements of customised electronics systems and solutions. For more information, please visit www.stee.stengg.com.
Christie, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ushio, Inc., Japan, (JP:6925), is a leader in visual solutions for world-class organisations, offering diverse applications for business, entertainment, and industry. A leading innovator in film projection since 1929 and a pioneer in digital projection systems since 1979, Christie has established a global reputation as a total service provider and the world’s single source manufacturer of a variety of display technologies and solutions. With the acquisition of Vista Controls Systems, Corp., Christie offers the most complete and advanced solutions for cinema, live venues, control rooms, business presentations, training facilities, 3D and Virtual Reality, simulation and education as well as industrial and government environments. For more information, visit www.christiedigital.com.