We’re delighted to mark the start of the year with a new, and very important, addition to our team.
Steve Johnson joins us as Opto Mechanical Engineer and is a highly-experienced engineer with a successful track record in the design and development of precision opto mechanical products. During his 26 years in the visual display industry he has worked as a senior engineer at SEOS and Rockwell Collins and has been a key player in the design and development of Target Projectors, High Dynamic Range simulation projectors, multi-channel display systems and a high-performance HMD for human factors research.
Steve brings his knowledge of display systems, precision mechanics and optics to the GBVI team to help develop cost effective solutions to challenging customer requirements.
A major part of what I do is to develop the design tools we use during the early stages of each project process – the ones that help map system design and accurately produce layout data for our customer projects. Occasionally I work on system blending designs too and am increasingly working with the team to gather data for various projector models that we can use in blend analysis.
My involvement in projects usually depends on the scope of the client requirements. On some projects, we play a key part in the design optimisation process of the display system, helping the client to build and specify the optimum configuration. On others, we are contracted to design and supply an optimised blending system where the client has already signed off on projector layout.
I have a degree in Games Art and Design, so not really from the sim or viz industry as I know it now, but I still find there’s a huge amount of overlap and similarity in the worlds of simulation and gaming. I’ve spent a lot of time with CAD software, 3D modelling and programming which has really been put to use here.
Unfortunately, we’re unable to mention the specifics of many projects we work on for obvious reasons. Recently though, I’ve been working on the delivery of a project for a search and rescue helicopter training programme. As a display system, it’s actually pretty complex with 11-channels of projection. I’ve recently developed new design tools that have overseen the entire project for us from initial design process through to completion – the creation of the masks was then handled by our usual in-house team.
We’re always testing the compatibility of projectors which can be a little challenging. If we receive a new enquiry that specifies a model of projector that we haven’t tested before, it’s not simply about pricing something up. It can mean the start of an R&D project where we often have to simulate the client environment by bringing in new screen shapes or material. We need to ensure our performance specification is accurate first time around and have to go the extra mile to achieve this.
I find it really enjoyable to get into the programming side of things, particularly seeing how the tools I develop consistently produce high standard results and streamline the process. Plus, we have a great office in the Sussex countryside, yet I’m still able to live right on the beach in the bustling city that is Brighton.
Our Optical Blending and projector edge blending solutions maximise contrast of simulation displays, and optimise for dark scene applications.
When deep black levels are critical to simulated training environments, GBvi projector edge blending solutions allow you to maintain an even black level across multi-channel displays, enhancing the perception of life-like imagery within projected displays. The result is an absence of any residual light distractions or artefacts that would otherwise be found in digitally blended displays.
Our Chronos optical blending technologies enable display system designers and integrators to overcome the hurdles faced when using digital projectors in dark environments, namely, channel overlap visibility and inferior display system contrast and dynamic range resulting from projector light leakage.
Sussex, England – 11 May 2016 – After five years of success, UK optical projection blending specialist, GBvi Limited, has completed its move into a new, larger R&D and operations building. Their line-up of proprietary solutions for multi-channel digital projection channel blending has recently been expanded to include new mechanical framework designs, improved mask algorithms for optimum levels of accuracy, alignment system advancements, projector blend mask actuation options and anti-reflection coatings.
Since 2011, GBvi has been supplying bespoke and custom-engineered optical blending systems for a range of applications including fast-jet simulation training, helicopter simulation training, ground-based military training, digital visitor attractions, themed entertainment experiences and immersive educational spaces.
To date, GBvi has supplied many bespoke optical projection blending systems to large-scale simulation and visualisation environments globally. Earlier this month, the team moved into its new, larger premises in Ditchling, Sussex, England, which accommodates more advanced design and manufacturing requirements.
Geoff Blackham, Founder and Managing Director of GBvi commented; “We are very proud of our achievements to date and are delighted to mark such an accomplishment with the opening of our new R&D and operations facility. We are repeatedly chosen by some of the most reputable simulation systems integrators, also working closely with projector manufacturers and extend our thanks to our partners and customers who have been part of our journey so far.”
GBvi will be exhibiting at ITEC 2016 in London from 17-19 May. Geoff will also be speaking at the show with a presentation titled ‘Optical Blending: Difficult yet Essential for Maximising Dynamic Range of Projection Displays’.
For more information on GBvi, please visit www.gbvi.co.uk
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What is Optical Blending?
Optical Blending uses physical masking techniques to provide managed fading of multiple partially-overlapped projected images so that their images are blended together to form a larger, continuous, image.
GBvi (gbvi.co.uk) has a long standing heritage in the field of display systems design, specialising in optical blending solutions for multi-channel projection environments, with no limit to display size, screen shape or projector count. The company works with an extensive network of integrator partners, resellers and designers with a focus on the markets of simulation, entertainment and attractions.
Their range of technologies and services supports even the most challenging displays; especially those requiring uniformity, clarity, invisible projection blend regions, true-to-life digital experiences, infinity displays, and ultra-black environments.
For more information please contact:
Beth Nicholas | beth.nicholas @ matchboxmedia dot co dot uk
+44 (0) 7891 291471
ITEC 2016 is the annual forum where representatives from across the military, industry and academia connect and share knowledge about military simulation, training and education community. For more information on ITEC 2016, click here.
Electronic blending solutions exist that produce excellent results for bright scenes but, for continuous background intensity levels in dark scenes, one must use infill techniques that sacrifice precious dynamic range. Often, solutions are commissioned that sacrifice up to 75% of the possible dynamic range, on the basis that ‘it’s the best you can get’. Often, this trade-off is not even apparent to the end-user, who therefore understandably assumes that the resulting performance really does represent the state of the art, which in turn limits the useful application scope of an expensive simulation system. Optical solutions to blending multiple channels can solve this problem, offering the promise to increase the utility and hence value of visual simulation training substantially, yet often this option is not even considered – so why is this?
The purpose of this paper is to inform the simulator operator and trainee community of this key area of visual system optimisation, including its cost-benefit analysis. Included in this will be a review of the mainstream projection technologies and their respective pros & cons, particularly with regard to scene dynamic range and blend implications. This in turn leads to a detailed review of optical blending options, presenting their operating theories and application scope. Finally, a new active optical blend technology is introduced that widens the range of display types that can benefit from high quality optical blending.
Want to know more about our Chronos Optical Blending Solution, and ‘Void’ – our brand new infinity display experience for attractions and leisure simulation?
Watch the rAVe pubs video interview with our Founder & MD, Geoff Blackham, at ISE 2016 in Amsterdam.