3D-News Archive June 2006

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3mensio Medical Imaging announces its new 3viseon™ 2.5 software release
3D-News Posted: Monday, June 26, 2006 (8:24 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster

3viseon™ is a software application which enables large medical datasets, generated by CT and MRI scanners, to be displayed as a three dimensional reconstruction using standard PC technology. This software can operate as a standalone 3viseon™ Workstation or can be seamlessly integrated into existing PACS systems.

The latest 3viseon™ release extends the possibilities to communicate with referring physicians by using new features like annotations and 2D or 3D captured presets. Furthermore, the 3viseon™ 2.5 release supports the use of innovative display technologies such as the Planar Systems’ StereoMirror™, with monitors ranging in size from 17" to 23".

"The combination of 3viseon™ software and the Planar StereoMirror™ technology adds true depth to real-time 3D rendering of our CT and MRI images and is the ultimate solution to 3D imaging", explains Dr. Thomas Frauenfelder, senior radiologist and chief of the 3D-Laboratory at the University Hospital of Zurich, Switzerland.

Another 3viseon™ customer, Russell N. Low, MD, Medical Director of the Sharp and Children’s MRI Center in San Diego, USA, indicates that "it provides very useful clinical information and quickly has become an integral part of how I evaluate MR exams."

"By working closely together with customers like Drs. Frauenfelder and Low, 3mensio demonstrates the ability to quickly deliver clinically relevant 3D solutions within the radiology field, based on off-the-shelf graphics cards and innovations from the computer industry", adds Frank Wessels, founder and CEO of 3mensio Medical Imaging BV.

BUG Norway creates world's first 3D digital cinema advert
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, June 20, 2006 (17:54 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster

Norwegian post-production and graphic design/animation studio BUG have created the world's first digital 3D cinema advert, which premiered on June 19th at the Screen Advertising Word Association (SAWA) seminar "The Best Ideas Come From Cinema - In 3D". The highly anticipated event is part of the Cannes Lions, the world's most prestigious advertising event, where the best adverts from around the world are showcased each year. The advert for Mitsubishi's new range of cars was animated and rendered in 3D by BUG, one of Scandinavia's fastest growing and most innovative digital studios and is currently screening in 2D.

Digital 3D is widely perceived as representing the next step in cinema technology. Disney's "Chicken Little" became the first film to be released in the new stereoscopic digital format, which does away with the anaglyph (red-and-blue) glasses and the big IMAX-style glasses, when it was shown in Disney 3D on 83 screens in the US last November and on a handful of screens in Europe and Asia earlier this year. At the NAB conference in Las Vegas this year "Titanic" director James Cameron predicted that Digital 3D would be the saviour of cinema with most major blockbusters released by the Hollywood studios in digital 3D. Directors George Lucas and Peter Jackson have also announced plans to re-release the "Star Wars" and "Lord of the Rings" trilogies in stereoscopically re-rendered digital 3D versions within a few years.

Mitsubishi's Norwegian advertising company MK Bergen agency turned to BUG to come up with an innovative and visually dazzling campaign for its new range of automobiles and jumped on the opportunity to become the first cinema advert to be shown in digital 3D. Speaking on behalf of the MK Bergen agency Svein Roger Selle commented that "We are extremely pleased with the work that BUG has done on the exciting new range of Mitsubishi cars and thrilled that it will be the first ever advert that goes out in digital 3D." The advert gives a 360 degree zoom-around of the new Outlander model. Despite the photo realistic look of the car in the advert, the images was created from scratch using CGI (computer graphic imagery) and digital animation in BUG's headquarter in Bergen, Norway.

"Making the advert was a real creative challenge and to then re-render it stereoscopically was a true technical challenge, but we are very happy with the result," comments BUG's Manager, Thomas Berland. BUG hopes that Mitsubishi will also participate in screening the advert in Digital 3D in a selection of Norwegian cinemas that are taking part in the NORDIC (NORway's Digital Interoperability in Cinemas) trial together with a future 3D title. The NORDIC project is Europe's largest digital cinema test currently under way, with over a dozen screens across Norway testing equipment from every major digital cinema manufacturers and films from the Hollywood studios, as well as other types of content.

The advert will play off a digital cinema server provided by Dolby and through a 2K DLP Cinema(tm) digital projector from Barco and viewed with special glasses provided by NuVision. Other co-sponsors of the SAWA event are Kodak and Technicolor. As well as the BUG/Mitsubishi advert, the event will screen digital stereoscopic footage from the Disney film "Chicken Little" and James Cameron documentary "Aliens of the Deep", as well as company trailers in 3D.

Eurotech Unveils the Passenger Counter
3D-News Posted: Monday, June 19, 2006 (16:56 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster

The Eurotech Passenger Counter, featuring highly accurate stereoscopic cameras integrated within a robust and lightweight extruded aluminium enclosure, can be considered one of the most reliable solutions available on the market for passenger counting operations.

The Passenger Counter meets the environmental specifications of EN51055 T1 up to IP65 protection class.

Software interfacing is simple: a standard RS-485 serial port is used to communicate data to and from the Passenger Counter.

The device can be easily and unobtrusively installed in the doorways of buses, trams and trains. It can also be used over gateways, corridors or turnstiles.

The Passenger Counter incorporates an isolated digital I/O port that can be used to interface with external devices.

The integrated stereoscopic cameras capture images of the area below the device in any kind of lighting conditions; the Passenger Counter can determine (with an accuracy of greater than 97%) if objects passing the detection area are people entering or leaving. If people are detected, the incoming or outgoing counters are incremented accordingly, along with time and date information.

The system can be easily configured and adapted to different applications and installations.

Buckeye System Brings New Digital 3D-Capability to Warfighters
3D-News Posted: Monday, June 19, 2006 (16:32 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster

A system initially adopted to help the Army Corps of Engineers detect invasive vegetation growing in coastal waterways is giving warfighters an edge in the global war on terror.

"Buckeye," a digital imaging system that's installed on an aircraft, gives ground commanders a bird's-eye view of the area in which they're operating, told Army Capt. Jed Richards, research and development coordinator for the Army's Topographic Engineering Center.

Featuring a high-quality digital camera with an extra-large focal frame, Buckeye "looks" nearly straight down from an aircraft and captures images of the area below. Analysts on the ground eliminate any distortions as they combine these multiple shots into one extra-large image, Richards explained.

These overlapping images create a "stereoscopic pair" that enables viewers wearing special polarized glasses to see the image in three dimensions, said Michael Tischler, a physical scientist here. "So when you do this for an entire city, you create a series of three-dimensional images," he said.

The Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. government's civil-works arm, initially tapped into this capability to identify nonnative plant growth before it began choking coastal areas. But its workers quickly recognized Buckeye's adaptability to its combat-support mission as well.

Buckeye has "a zillion applications" for warfighters, Tischler said.

For example, the system's 3D capability, provided in a detailed map that includes grid coordinates, gives troops a level of situational awareness simply not possible from standard overhead imagery.

"And there are a lot of benefits to that," Tischler said. "You are able to see heights, the lay of the land, (and) you are able to plan better. You're able to get a better idea of what is there."

Troops can use it to rehearse patrols through areas where they've never been and identify potential sniper locations, evaluating them via a laptop computer or a hard-copy printout. "If you're getting a briefing before moving into a city, you can look at this and say, 'This is the route we'll take in, and these are the critical points as we move along,'" Richards said.

But unlike a traditional map, Buckeye enables troops to evaluate their operating area from different vantage points. "So if I'm on top of a building, this is the view I have," Richards said, pointing to a Buckeye image from an Iraqi city.

"This is the city I lived in for six months," he said. "And before I drove in, I had no idea what to expect. But if I had seen this image, it would have been a huge benefit. This gives incoming units a familiarization with the area before they ever hit the ground."

Troops on the ground are giving Buckeye a resounding thumbs up. "The feedback we're getting from the field is that they're using it and loving it," Richards said.

The first Buckeye system deployed to Iraq in November 2004, where the 1st Stryker Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, from Fort Lewis, Wash., put it through its first combat application.

Multinational Corps Iraq got its own Buckeye system in November 2005, and the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) is currently operating it.

The 10th Mountain Division, in Afghanistan, got the Buckeye system in late May.

Buckeye's simple design - basically a camera, gyroscope and computer processor - and the fact that it needs only a pilot, operator and processor to operate makes it a simple, low-cost tool for the terror war, Richards said.

"The troops on the ground really appreciate the resolution and the capability of this data set," he said. "It's giving new capabilities to the warrior."

Planar Expands StereoMirror(TM) Display Line to Offer Advanced Features for Geospatial, Visualization, Simulation and Medical Professionals
3D-News Posted: Monday, June 19, 2006 (15:58 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster

Planar Systems announced the latest advancements in 3D stereoscopic LCD displays with the availability of its StereoMirror 20- and 23-inch wide monitors. Planar's SD2020 and SD2320W deliver enhanced stereo image quality by offering greater resolution and enlarged screen-space, beneficial for photogrammetry, image exploitation, complex visualization, 3D simulation and radiographic investigation.

In a tandem response to market demand and Planar's ongoing strategic effort for leadership and growth in digital imaging, the recently announced SD1710 has been evolved into two larger formats to continue the SD line's offering of superior image quality. The new 20- and 23-inch monitors will continue to offer industry-leading flicker-free crisp images and optimal user-comfort for geoscientists, cartographers, engineers, image analysts and environmental planners. The larger formats, intense depth perception and increased stereo contrast will allow users to more accurately extract 3D data and differentiate images to map terrain, identify boundaries, plan missions and investigate habitats.

Last year, Planar partnered with companies such as BAE Systems, Boeing, DAT/EM Systems International and Matrox to demonstrate and validate this advanced 3D stereoscopic monitor design that meets the needs of customers who require an optimum way to visualize complex images and data. BAE customers have purchased Planar's stereo monitors for such applications as disaster relief support, cartography, targeting and analyzing flight paths around airports.

"Planar's StereoMirror monitors enable our customers to obtain clear, bright, high-quality stereo images, which are crucial to the successful execution of their jobs," said Dr. A. Stewart Walker, director of marketing for BAE Systems' Geospatial eXploitation Products business. Users of BAE Systems' SOCET SET® geospatial analysis software employ Planar's stereo monitor and aerial or satellite imagery for extracting 3D data of buildings, bridges, mountains or valleys. "By offering the new 20-inch and 23-inch monitors, Planar has increased size and resolution without compromising the stereo image quality or viewing comfort that enable photogrammetrists to work an eight-hour shift on a stereo monitor."

In addition to geospatial applications, Planar's entire SD series offers improved image sensitivity and precision for medical professionals. Mammography, for example, is considered one of the most difficult radiographic exams to interpret and confirm in terms of detection and diagnosis. The complexity of breast x-ray images makes it difficult to discern abnormal features because of over- and underlying normal tissue. Radiologists challenged with discerning intricate x-rays can now improve the early detection of breast cancer by using 3D stereoscopic analysis, which enables the radiologist to view the breast tissue in depth.

"We are currently conducting a study at Emory University in Atlanta, comparing stereo digital mammography to conventionally used non-stereo digital mammography, to determine whether stereo mammography would provide more accurate detection of abnormal lesions and, thus, reduce unnecessary recall of patients. Initial results using Planar's prototype SD2250 indicate a significant reduction in false positives when stereoscopic viewing is used," said Dr. David Getty of BBN Technologies of Cambridge, Massachusetts USA.

Furthermore, Planar recognizes the growing demand for sophisticated stereo 3D medical imaging and has a strategic dedication to being the best company to serve this market. "Demand for 3D LCD monitors able to manipulate images in real-time is growing, particularly in medical, photogrammetry, geospatial intelligence and image exploitation applications," said Rhoda Alexander, director of monitor research at iSuppli. "The combination of flicker-free imaging and high-resolution performance makes LCD solutions ideal for 3D applications. The smaller form factor and lighter weight of LCD displays provide an added bonus in applications such as oil and gas exploration, which require frequent shifts in the display location."

Much like the SD1710, both the SD2020 and SD2320W allow users to view stereo images independent of position, using comfortable, lightweight polarized glasses that are similar to sunglasses. Because both eyes see a continuous, full resolution and flicker-free image, the monitor can be used for an entire workshift without discomfort in normal office lighting. Alternatively, CRT stereoscopic displays can cause eye strain, headaches, or even nausea from alternately blinking right and left images. Autostereo displays, which do not require a user to wear glasses, restrict users, forcing them to position their head in a specific "sweet spot" with no room for movement over extended periods of time while delivering full resolution to each eye.

The SD series uses StereoMirror(TM) technology to provide the highest quality stereoscopic image available in a larger desktop monitor and is composed of two 20- or 23-inch LCD monitors in an up/down configuration separated at a 110-degree angle. A semitransparent mirror is positioned at a bisecting angle between the two monitors that, when combined with polarizing glasses, generates the stereo separation. This unique beam-splitter approach creates a stereoscopic 3D monitor that retains the full resolution, response time and color saturation of the individual monitors, while also offering a dual use as a standard 2D monitor with the flip of a switch or by simply lifting the mirror. The SD series supports a broad platform of OpenGL, DirectX and Windows based applications utilizing dual-DVI output graphics cards right off the shelf.

Beyond the applications for stereo 3D imaging today, Planar is exploring emerging imaging applications, including molecular modeling, CAD/architecture and PC computer gaming.

The SD series includes monitor sizes ranging from 17- to 23-inch, which are available for immediate delivery. All StereoMirror(TM) monitors and accessories are now available through Planar and direct resellers and come with a one year warranty. Extended and advance replacement warranties are available. For additional information visit http://www.planar.com/stereomirror

Horseman 3D Camera
3D-News Posted: Monday, June 12, 2006 (0:53 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster

Komamura, a Japanese camera company, recently revealed a new stereo camera: the "Horseman 3D". It is planned to be available from summer 2006. The price has not yet been revealed.

The camera has an electronically-controlled focal plain shutter with speeds ranging from 8 seconds to 1/1000th of a second and takes stereo pairs 24 x 32 mm in size on regular 135 film. The lenses are 38 mm f/2.8 with the closest focus at 0.7 meters.

No official data is available regarding the stereo base - but the image format and photo suggests that it is around 34 mm - and therefore suitable mostly for close-up photographs.

DX-coded films can be used - but the film speeds can also be set manually from ISO 25 to ISO 3200 in 1/3 steps. The film is transported by a motor-drive and there are three shooting modes: S (single), C (continuous) and M (Multiple Exposure). The latter does automatic bracketing.

At 166 x 86 x 66 mm, the Horseman 3D camera is fairly compact - but not a lightweight camera at approximately 900 grams.

Philips and Samsung to Showcase New 3D-Display Innovations at SID2006
3D-News Posted: Tuesday, June 6, 2006 (17:02 UTC) | Posted By: Webmaster

Royal Philips Electronics and Samsung announced that they will present their latest innovations in 3D-Display technology at the Society of Information Display 2006 (SID2006) International Symposium, being held in San Francisco's Moscone Center from June 6-8, 2006.

At the Philips booth, #1042, the company will demonstrate the latest in experiencing 3D-TV without the use of special glasses and using a selection of animation, gaming and stereoscopic video content.

Philips 3D displays, based on WOWvx(TM) technology, are the latest in the company's long history of display innovation and deliver stunning out-of-screen 3D effects without the need for special glasses or filters. Initial distribution will be for the professional market, with such applications as out-of-home advertising, digital signage, the medical industry, and others.

The 3D display solution from Philips is a complete end-to-end 3D system that supports the process from 3D content creation up to visualization. Some applications today already use a 3D dataset, but deliver a 2D image at the end. Philips now unlocks this content by supporting the visualization in 3D. This includes computer animations, real-time 3D applications such as games, and video conversion from 2D to 3D as well as stereo to 3D conversion tools.

Samsung SDI Co. has developed a new 3D display based for the first time on active-matrix organic light-emitting diode (AMOLED) technology. Samsung SDI said the new 4.3-inch 3D display, targeted for use in mobile phones, features a WQVGA-level (480 by 272) resolution. Samsung also claims this is the highest resolution ever achieved in a 3D display panel.

The AMOLED 3D display provides high-resolution stereoscopic images at a processing rate of 120 Hz, more than two times faster than existing 3D displays, Samsung said.

The display will be unveiled during the SID 2006 International Symposium in San Francisco, and is expected to be commercialized next year, according to the company.

Samsung added that it is pushing AMOLED 3D display technology for use in notebook computers and TVs. "Within the next 10 years, most flat-panel displays will adopt the three-dimensional display technology," predicted Chung Ho-Kyoon, head of Samsung SDI's display R&D center.

The global 3D display market is expected to grow from 4.98 million units in 2007 to 8.12 million units in 2010, according to market researcher iSuppli.

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Editor-in-Chief: Alexander Klein.

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Last modified on August 31, 2006

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