Real-time Populated Virtual Environments

Research / Research Groups / Real-time Populated Virtual Environments

Research focus on computer graphics, animation and simulation of virtual humans, a modelling and simulation of 3D built environments.

Recent advances in virtual and augmented reality hardware have finally moved these technologies out of the lab and made them accessible as consumer items (e.g. Oculus rift or Microsoft HoloLens). Applications of such mixed-reality (MR) systems are endless and include many different fields such as entertainment, training and visualisation. Fundamental to many of these applications is the representation of virtual humans. There are significant challenges to generating realistic virtual humans.

Although nowadays it is possible to render virtual scenes that may sometimes be difficult to differentiate from reality from the point of view of the quality of the visualisation, the whole problem of operating and interaction with objects and events within immersive environments remains wide open for innovation. For example, the representation, behaviour and interaction with virtual humans remains a highly difficult problem in immersive environments. In computer games this problem is solved by highly constrained forms of interaction determined by the game logic. In a virtual environment, where people are free to move and look anywhere that they like, and where they share space with life-sized characters, characters that can initiate interactions through close approaches, gazing directly in the eyes of participants opens up a major field of research. In this MRG we will look mostly at techniques for adding realistic, reactive virtual humans in virtual environments.

We will look mainly at the body animation and behaviour of the characters and use existing systems for the rendering, facial animation, verbal interaction etc. We will also look at the issue of creating 3D models of built environments.

MRG leader:
Dr. Yiorgos Chrysanthou

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