Real-time Overlay of Map Features onto a Video Feed
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Cognitics, Inc. proposes a novel software system that combines a geospatial database and a 3D-simulated environment with technology developed by Lockheed Martin for targeting systems. The new software system will be able to precisely identify the camera position and orientation for each frame of video, and use that information to accurately overlay the video frames with a wide variety of geospatial and map features. This technology can dramatically increase the situational awareness of UAV pilots by displaying and/or highlighting the location of targets, troops, landmarks, or any other item that has a geographic location component.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control has a huge amount of experience and technology in targeting and fire control. In this field, it is critical to determine the position of the camera (e.g. a missile, or an aircraft) with a greater precision than is available from GPS and flight data (e.g. compass, altimetry, bank, attitude) alone. Lockheed has developed a system that compares frames from a video feed with a simulated environment that represents ground truth for a given area, and builds a transformation matrix that can correct the GPS position to be obtain an even more accurate position. This allows targeting and fire control to be extremely precise.
Cognitics is a leader in geospatial data preparation and generation in the defense simulation industry. To accurately display features on a video feed from a UAV, we propose to leverage the technology originally researched and developed by Lockheed Martin for targeting and fire-control systems with cutting edge simulation technology. First, a synthetic 3D environment representing the "ground truth" is generated and rendered according to the camera...
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...added to allow dynamic content to be shown to the end user in real-time. For example, a moving vehicle could be highlighted or represented via a symbol in real-time based on remote telemetry. Controlled airspace can be updated in real-time to show the pilot what areas are cleared for flight. Thus, at the conclusion of Phase II, the Air Force will receive the capability to overlay the video feeds from UAVs with data such as map features and tactical information in real-time.
For this project, Lockheed Martin will work as a subcontractor. Cognitics employees will work closely with research and engineering personnel from Lockheed Martin to leverage the existing research in this area and to apply the results to fielded systems. Lockheed Martin will provide access to data, information, source code, expertise and facilities as needed to insure the success of this effort.