Divisive display augmented reality (ddAR) for real-world warfighter performance

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PubDate: April 2020

Teams: 1U.S. Army Research Lab. (United States);2DCS Corp. (United States)

Writers: Chou P. Hung, Gabriella B. Larkin, Michael N. Geuss, Chloe Callahan-Flintoft, Paul D. Fedele, Kim F. Fluitt, Barry Vaughan, Min Wei

PDF: Divisive display augmented reality (ddAR) for real-world warfighter performance

Abstract

Commercial augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) displays are designed for indoor nearfield gaming tasks. Conversely, outdoor warfighter tasks have a different set of needs for optimal performance, e.g. for aided target recognition (AiTR). The information display needs to be visible across a wide luminance range, from mesopic to photopic (0.001 to 100,000 cd/m2), including maxto- min luminance ratio exceeding 10,000-to-1 within a single scene (high dynamic range luminance, HDR). The information display also should not distract from other tasks, a difficult requirement because the saliency of the information display depends on its relationship to the HDR background texture. We suggest that a transparency-adjustable divisive display AR (ddAR) could achieve these luminance and saliency needs, with potentially less complexity and processing power than current additive displays. We report measurements of acuity to predict how such ddAR might affect low contrast visibility under gaze shifts, which often result in 10- or 100-fold changes in luminance. We developed an HDR display projection system with up to 100,000-to-1 luminance contrast ratio and assessed how luminance dynamics affect acuity to semi-transparent letters against a uniform background. Immediately following a luminance flash, visual acuity is unaffected at 20% letter contrast, and it is only weakly affected at 10% letter contrast (+0.10 and +0.12 LogMAR for flashes of 25× and 100× luminance). The resilience of low contrast letter acuity across luminance changes suggests that soft highlighting and ddAR could effectively convey information, to improve AiTR under real world luminance.

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