HiBall-3100™ Wide-Area, High-Precision Tracker and 3D Digitizer
The HiBall-3100 Tracker is a new approach to wide-area tracking, delivering unparalleled accuracy with low latency, high update rate, and scalability to cover a very large region. Based on the Wide-Area Tracking research project of the Department of Computer Science of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill — the HiBall-3100 is an optical tracker achieving new levels of performance for virtual and augmented reality, simulation and training, industrial tracking, film and video production, entertainment, and 3D digitization. The HiBall-3100 has a unique set of features. The HiBall-3100 tracker:
The HiBall-3100’s optical tracker has been designed for the most demanding applications, achieving new levels of range, accuracy, and update rate.
The HiBall-3100 tracker system is composed of two key integrated components; the HiBall Optical Sensor and the HiBall Ceiling Beacon Arrays. The HiBall Optical Sensor is composed of 6 lenses and photodiodes arranged so that each photodiode can ‘view’ infrared LEDs, in the Beacon Arrays mounted on the ceiling, through several of the 6 lenses. The assembly includes signal processing and analog-to-digital conversion circuitry. The total weight is about 6 ounces, making it light enough to comfortably mount on a head-mounted display or hand-held device. By locating the sensors on the person or object being tracked — inside-out tracking — sensitivity around the working area is increased and the tracker area scales almost without limit. An entire lab, movie set, or assembly area can be tracked.
The HiBall can also be mounted on the stylus supplied with system enabling extremely accurate measurements of individual objects within a large space. For example, this can be used for very rapid measurement of actual television or movie sets or other real-world objects to be combined with virtual scenes. No other device can provide comparable speed and accuracy over a wide area.
HiBall-3100 Beacon Array Modules
The infrared LEDs seen by the HiBall Sensor are embedded in a series of ceiling mounted strips forming a 2D Beacon Array - 8 LEDs per strip; 6 strips per Beacon Array Module (BAM). These strips are designed to slip easily into a typical ‘drop ceiling’ with no changes required in panels, lights, vents, etc. - the more Beacon Array Modules employed, the greater the range of the tracker. The arrays are highly modular — available in configurations covering as little as 144 square feet (12’ x 12’) or more than 1,600 square feet (40’ x 40’).
And no special adjustments are required of the ceiling structure — the system’s precision is unaffected by typical variations in ceiling height or in strip placement. The strips are mounted in approximately the right location using a simple spacer tool. The HiBall system's autocalibration feature then rapidly and accurately determines the precise location of the individual ceiling strips creating a 'ceiling map' that can be saved and/or continuously updated while tracking.
The HiBall Sensor and the Beacon Arrays are synchronized by a Ceiling-HiBall Interface Board (CIB) which enables extremely high rates of LED ‘sightings’ — approximately 3,000 per second. This results in a tracker update rate of 2,000 Hz — several times faster than other commercially available wide-area trackers. Faster updates means lower latency and more accurate tracking - even with rapid movements.
HiBall-3000/3100 Tracker Installations
The HiBall-3100 is a modular system designed to meet the most demanding needs of virtual and augmented reality. Systems can range in coverage from as little as 144 sq. ft. to more than 1,600 sq. ft. Typical systems include:
* Specifications subject to change without notice
Download HiBall-3100 Tracker data sheet in PDF format (335KB).
Copyright 2011 3rdTech, Inc. All rights reserved.