DCU based research organisation, Clarity,awarded EU funding

By Timmy Kelleher

Dublin City University (DCU) based sensor technology research organisation, Clarity, has been awarded €2 million by the European Union (EU) to further develop its work.

Clarity Centre for Sensor Web Technologies is a joint initiative by DCU, University College Dublin and The Tyndall Institute in Cork. Its aim is to apply the latest motion sensor technologies to improve understanding of a wide variety of issues in the medical, security and teaching sectors.

Clarity recently received €2 million euro in EU funding towards its research. This funding will be put towards programmes such as those allowing a Prima Ballerina in Moscow to deliver a 3D lesson to pupils anywhere in the world via the internet. The result is that the pupils sense that they are dancing with the instructor in a shared space and in real time.

This same technology is being used currently to develop CCTV tracking systems. For example, police at an airport could monitor individual passengers as they pass through a terminal. At the moment this task is undertaken by trained agents sitting at monitors tracking each individual as they moves through the facility.

Clarity simplifies this process by identifying and then monitoring the gestures of the passenger and then tracking them.

Prof Alan Smeaton from the DCU School of Computing, said, “Our work based on sensor technology will allow faster and more accurate tracking, which will be of enormous benefit to security agencies in places such as airports and banks throughout the world”.

Clarity’s Director, Professor Barry Smith, sees Clarity as a bridge between two worlds of information. It connects traditional information, inputs from keyboards, scanners, memory sticks and the like with information generated by events in the physical world, be they dance moves or the particular posture of an airport passenger.

According to Professor Smith, “This unique combination of sensors, software, and the Internet will enable new types of information services across a wide range of sectors from health and the environment to education, retail, and entertainment.”

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