In this project, the AGM R&D team developed and refined the use of a facial scanning rig. The rig is a physical device comprising multiple cameras and lighting that are mounted on scaffolding around a 'scanning volume'. This is an area at which objects are placed before being photographed from multiple angles. The object is typically a person's head, but it can be anything of this approximate size. Software compares the photographs to create a digital 3D recreation - this process is called photogrammetry. The 3D model is then processed by further pieces of software and eventually becomes a face that can be animated inside in Unreal Engine, which is a popular piece of game development software made by the company Epic. This project was funded by Epic's 'Megagrant' system, and the focus of the work is on streamlining and automating the processing pipeline, and on improving the quality of the resulting output. Additional work has been done on skin shaders (simulating the quality of real skin in a digital form) and the use of AI to re/create lifelike hair styles. The R&D work has produced significant savings in regards to the processing time and the quality of facial scans, has produced a system that has benefitted the educational offering of BUas, and has attracted collaborators from the commercial entertainment/simulation industries. This work complements and extends previous work done on the VIBE project, where the focus was on creating lifelike human avatars for the medical industry.
|Effective start/end date||10/11/20 → 31/12/21|
- Epic MegaGrants
- facial scanning
- face scanning
- virtual humans
- digital realities
- hair simulation
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