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Proceedings Paper

LCD masks for spatial augmented reality
Author(s): Quinn Y. J. Smithwick; Daniel Reetz; Lanny Smoot
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Paper Abstract

One aim of Spatial Augmented Reality is to visually integrate synthetic objects into real-world spaces amongst physical objects, viewable by many observers without 3D glasses, head-mounted displays or mobile screens. In common implementations, using beam-combiners, scrim projection, or transparent self-emissive displays, the synthetic object’s and real-world scene’s light combine additively. As a result, synthetic objects appear low-contrast and semitransparent against well-lit backgrounds, and do not cast shadows. These limitations prevent synthetic objects from appearing solid and visually integrated into the real-world space. We use a transparent LCD panel as a programmable dynamic mask. The LCD panel displaying the synthetic object’s silhouette mask is colocated with the object’s color image, both staying aligned for all points-of-view. The mask blocks the background providing occlusion, presents a black level for high-contrast images, blocks scene illumination thus casting true shadows, and prevents blow-by in projection scrim arrangements. We have several implementations of SAR with LCD masks: 1) beam-combiner with an LCD mask, 2) scrim projection with an LCD mask, and 3) transparent OLED display with an LCD mask. Large format (80” diagonal) and dual layer volumetric variations are also implemented.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 March 2014
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 9011, Stereoscopic Displays and Applications XXV, 90110O (6 March 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2035091
Show Author Affiliations
Quinn Y. J. Smithwick, Disney Research (United States)
Daniel Reetz, Disney Research (United States)
Lanny Smoot, Disney Research (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9011:
Stereoscopic Displays and Applications XXV
Andrew J. Woods; Nicolas S. Holliman; Gregg E. Favalora, Editor(s)

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