At the 2010 Ryder Cup golf tournament, which was held at Celtic Manor, in Wales, Gwent police was able to track its own officers as avatars, as well as to follow the movement of VIPs and other high-profile attendees along with their protection personnel and escorts. As a result, the police was provided with a graphical overview offering much higher accuracy than ever before, allowing commanders to view the event in detail and make decisions based on a full understanding of evolving situations.
This capability was drawn from EADS Innovation Works' development of a futuristic command control system as part of the PuLSE (Public at Large Scale Events) technology demonstrator at its Newport facility, also in Wales. Initial activity was focused on the development of a virtual operations centre incorporating I-room technologies from the University of Edinburgh.
The programme continues EADS Innovation Works' fusing of different technologies, including immersive three-dimensional virtual environments, automatic speech recognition and speech-to-text, cyber security, visual analytics, situational awareness and an intelligent sensor network. This work has also attracted interest from the UK Ministry of Defence, securing a research project with the Centre for Defence Enterprise to further develop the technical capabilites for future applications.
Controlling virtual environments
In related activity, advances in three-dimensional modelling are being used for real-time exploitation in future security applications. To achieve this goal, the Innovation Works team in Newport is working with the University of California, Berkeley in validating a tele-immersion cage that creates a three-dimensional model by using 12 stereoscopic camera clusters with the associated triggering and rendering systems.
After bringing the tele-immersion cage to an operational status in 2010, Innovation Works plans to evolve the system further with three-dimensional visualisation capabilities for collaborative experiments, enhancements in performance through the effective use of graphics processing units in stereo reconstruction and rendering, and the development of an appropriate pipeline to utilise the captured model data in other environments.
The tele-immersion cage’s development will also continue in the academic community through Project Universe (involving the universities of Aberystwyth and Bangor, both in Wales), along with other external and internal collaborators. This work will support EADS Innovation Works' Project TANGO (Technically Advanced Next Generation Office) in cooperation with the University of Edinburgh, as well as an initiative called ROGUEVIDEO (Real-time Online Gaming Use-case Engine for Validation of Interagency Doctrine during Emergency Operations) with the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. The project addresses a critical gap in command and control of first responders that exists across government, military and civilian agencies, enabling a true multi-agency validation of existing and proposed procedures. By integrating U.S., European and Asian emergency response procedures into a single open-standard framework, ROGUEVIDEO is to produce the first ever command and control training tool that is simultaneously multi-agency and trans-national.
Did you know…?
EADS’ Project TANGO provides a virtual collaborative environment for general business and specific homeland security applications. The Tango room records everything that is said and presented in the meeting in sound, image and video.