20 January. 2020
RISE and Sony Semiconductor Solutions
On January 14th, Dr Takaaki Nakagawa, Director of the Development Center of the Business Development Division for Sony Semiconductor Solutions visited the Visual Computing Group at RISE. The purpose of the visit was to initiate collaboration between the Visual Computing Group of RISE and Sony Semiconductor Solutions in the area of Time-of-Flight (ToF) cameras.
A Time-of-Flight (ToF) camera is a range imaging device that measures the round trip time of a light signal provided by a laser in order to resolve distance between the camera and each point of the image captured by the camera. The depth images provided by this device act as a source of 3D information about the world, in addition to the 2D information provided by traditional color cameras. ToF cameras are becoming increasingly popular in mobile devices such as smart phones, autonomous vehicles, drones, and robots. They have significant applications in areas such as augmented reality, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, navigation, photography and authentication systems.
Sony is a world leader in the emerging ToF cameras market, and is interested in sponsoring research teams to develop applications that leverage the 3D information provided by these devices. The Visual Computing Group has significant expertise in scene understanding using deep learning architectures trained on 3D data, and is very interested in developing applications that use input from ToF cameras.
During the visit, Dr Nakagawa presented the work of Sony Semiconductor Solutions and the future steps in this area, while members of the Visual Computing Group presented the research interests and current projects of the group. Acknowledging the mutual interests of both parties, a sponsoring agreement was signed by Dr Yiorgos Chrysanthou, the Research Director of RISE. As part of the agreement, Sony Semiconductor Solutions provided a prototype Sony Xperia smart phone equipped with a ToF camera, together with the software development kit for developing mobile applications using the camera.
The future steps of the collaboration involve the development of demo mobile applications, to be displayed at Sony's exhibition booths during mobile exhibitions, as well as additional funding arrangements.