StarTracker Serves Ace Augmented Reality at Wimbledon 2019

Sep 04, 2019

StarTracker Serves Ace Augmented Reality at Wimbledon 2019

With broadcasters pushing boundaries with real-time augmented reality and virtual sets, it’s no exaggeration to say that sports coverage has also dramatically improved over the past few years. To stay ahead of the game, sport & events graphics company, MOOV have adopted the most advanced hardware and software to deliver immersive, highly engaging content that covers every angle for viewers.

For the live coverage of Wimbledon 2019 tennis championships, BBC and MOOV have created an impressive set for interviews and daily post-match analysis. Situated within the onsite broadcast centre, the set features a range of augmented reality graphics.

MOOV are using RT Software’s AR solution, which is based on a 3 camera (2 pedestals and 1 jib) setup which utilises the StarTracker camera tracking technology from Mo-Sys. This optical tracking system gathers reliable and highly-precise tracking data, enabling studio cameras to be moved when overlaying augmented graphics.

For both Mo-Sys and Real-time 3D broadcast graphics developer, RT Software, this is the first time their Augmented Reality solutions have been in use at Wimbledon. Extending the studio with AR graphics allows the BBC to enhance the viewer experience with high impact graphics that would not be possible in a traditional studio. AR Graphics include virtual life size cutouts of players on glass plinths in front of the presenters, and a virtual “Magic Window” looking out over a 3D render of a tennis court with results and match data laid on to the court surface.

As well as giving the appearance of perspective and parallax to the ‘Magic Window’, camera moves include a passing shot from the glass plinth to reveal the presenters behind. Each camera feed is passed through a single 3d-Live render engine (also from RT Software) which renders both the player cutouts and the magic window in real time. Control of the render engines is provided using the WebControl application, a browser based application providing users remote control over the application of graphics from any position on the network.

Nev Appleton, director and co-founder of MOOV said: “We couldn’t be happier with the results that we have achieved using the 3d-Live render engine from RT Software, as well as the StarTracker camera tracking system from Mo-Sys. We are always looking to use the best software and hardware for Wimbledon and this year is no exception.”

BBC Sport Studio: StarTracker mounted on jib with optical tracking good

Michael Geissler, CEO Mo-Sys said: “With Wimbledon being such a key event in the UK’s sporting calendar, we are extremely excited to be working with MOOV and providing StarTracker for this year’s coverage”.

Mike Fredriksen, Commercial Director of RT Software added “RT Software is delighted to be working with the BBC at Wimbledon, providing the underlying graphics technology for the studio AR graphics. RT Software has long since been associated with virtual studio and AR graphics at flagship BBC coverage including elections, Eurovision and key sporting events but this is our first Wimbledon. Working with Moov and Mo-Sys is always a pleasure and we are pleased the partnership yields such great looking results.”

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