Novel formats for 3D User Interfaces: VR and beyond

Lead Research Organisation: University of Sussex
Department Name: Sch of Engineering and Informatics


The main goal or the doctoral research is to:
1) develop systems that allow uninstrumented users to directly see and interact with 3D content;
2) identify interaction principles to support users around such systems.
This main goal is enabled by previous research on shape-changing, 3D displays using NSDs (Non-Solid Diffusers, i.e. made of fog, mist, dust).
The research will leverage four relevant properties:
P1. NSD control using electro-magnetic (EM) fields: NSDs use a mixture of polar molecules, allowing them to react to E fields and to hold more charge.
P2. Directional scattering of light, demonstrating they present highly directional scattering.
P3. Polarization coherence: Polarity of the light scattered by an NSD is retained. Stereo with olarized glasses is known. The project will be using NSDs as modulators of coherent light (i.e.holography).
P4. Reach through interaction: NSDs displays reconstruct themselves around the user body, when they reach through. Thus NSDs offer their huge potential (P1-P3), without hindering interaction.
The research will accomplish the following objectives:
O1. Shape changing NSDs: The challenge is to explore control techniques for the trajectory and shape of NSDs. The student will explore the range of potential shapes and their shape resolution. More specially, he will seek form factors that can adapt to a flexible range of scenarios (i.e. a
concave NSD display could span in front of a user, covering the region the user's arms can easily reach. This shape could become convex if more users joined, inviting user's to seat around them).
O2. True 3D NSDs: The optical properties of NSDs (P2 and P3), enable them to act as very interesting light modulators. The possibility to affect these optical properties by dynamically adjusting their position in real time (O1), enables a huge range of novel approaches to True3D.
The PhD student will particularly explore multi-view approaches (i.e. the NSD acting as an adjustable lens, adjusting configuration of 3D views) and holographic approaches (i.e. using NSDs as a light modulators of coherent light).
This research will lead to the next breakthrough in interactive 3D display technology, delivering foundational impact to the field and envisioning formats that gracefully integrate 3D into our daily tasks.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/N509784/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2021
1955518 Studentship EP/N509784/1 21/09/2017 31/03/2021 Jose Luis Berna Moya