Following the signing of a manufacturing licensing deal with QinetiQ, a lightweight and portable eye tracking system is now being manufactured and commercially made available by Boston, MA-based Applied Science Laboratories (ASL).
Suitable for numerous sporting and marketing applications, the portable “Mobile Eye” headset is about the same size and weight as a pair of sunglasses and incorporates a low-powered infrared light source plus two miniature cameras to see exactly where a user is looking within their field of vision. This in turn is connected to a small, portable, high resolution DVCR-based recording device on a users’ belt to capture over an hours worth of footage.
Developed from QinetiQ’s research into a “Look & Fire” system for fast-jet pilots, applications for the Mobile Eye system include a host of sports training (ball and eye coordination or target recognition) and ergonomic assessments (such as how we anticipate potential hazards when driving or what catches a shopper’s eye in the supermarket). Some medical training (what a surgeon concentrates on during a procedure) and education opportunities (for example how we read and anticipate a music score) also exist – along with many others.
The availability of miniaturised components like the cameras, along with QinetiQ’s development of bespoke mathematical algorithms to analyse the resulting imagery on standard PCs, both help keep the price to around $20,000.
Under the terms of the licensing deal, ASL has global manufacturing and marketing rights for Mobile Eye through its distributors within designated commercial market sectors and QinetiQ will receive a royalty for each unit sold.
QinetiQ will also continue to develop the functionality of the system along with applying it to specific applications in defence and public sector markets to help better understand behaviour traits and learning.