Life-Size Holograms Are Set to Revolutionize Videoconferencing

TeleHuman2 smart projector ring. (Image: Queen's University)
TeleHuman2 smart projector ring. (Image: Queen's University)

A Queen’s University researcher will soon unveil TeleHuman 2 — the world’s first truly holographic videoconferencing system. TeleHuman2 allows people in different locations to appear before one another in life-size 3D — as if they were in the same room.

Roel Vertegaal, Professor of Human-Computer Interaction at the Queen’s University School of Computing, said in a statment:

Using a ring of intelligent projectors mounted above and around a retro-reflective, human-sized cylindrical pod, Dr. Vertegaal’s team has been able to project objects as light fields that can be walked around and viewed from all sides simultaneously by multiple users — much like Star Trek’s famed, fictional “holodeck.”

Capturing the remote 3D image with an array of depth cameras, his team has “teleported” live 3D images of a human from one room to another — a feat that is set to revolutionize human telepresence.

TeleHuman2 smart projector ring. Credit: Queen's University

TeleHuman2 smart projector ring. (Image: Queen’s University)

Because the display projects a light field with many images, one for every degree of angle, users need not wear a headset or 3D glasses to experience each other in augmented reality. Dr. Vertegaal, who is also the head of the Queen’s Human Media Lab, added:

Dr. Vertegaal first debuted the TeleHuman technology in 2012, but at that time the device only allowed for a single viewer to see the holographic projection correctly. With TeleHuman 2, multiple participants are able to see their holographic friend or colleague, each from their individual perspective.

TeleHuman 2 Smart Projector Ring. Credit: Queen's University

TeleHuman 2 Smart Projector Ring. (Image: Queen’s University)

To test the system, Dr. Vertegaal had users judge angles at which a robotic arrow, mounted on a tripod, was pointing whilst physically present in the room, and while rendered on the TeleHuman 2. They did not judge the angles between the real and the virtual representation as significantly different, Dr Vertegaal explained:

Provided by: Human Media Lab, Queen’s University [Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.]

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