Barco Auto Alignment Solution Paving the way for Light-valve Technology Control
 

Barco's sophisticated AutoAlign solution, a revolutionary tool for multi-system automated alignment, is making its way into a number of visual display applications powered by light-valve technology. Barco plans to implement AutoAlign at the National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS) at the University of Iowa.

Xenia, OH May 6, 2005 -- Owned by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), NADS immerses drivers in a highly realistic environment to study methods for creating safer driving practices, safer highway designs, and safer vehicles. At this complex installation, the Barco AutoAlign will maintain brightness and contrast settings, color uniformity, and focus across a mix of BarcoReality SIM 6 MKII and SIM 6 Ultra LCD projection systems utilized in the simulator.

The Barco AutoAlign simplifies the alignment of multiple projector display systems, alleviating the daunting and time-consuming task of aligning a multiple projector display system. It provides an automated approach to efficiently perform routine alignments. Advanced technology allows a user to perform repeatable and accurate alignments and maintenance tasks quickly and easily with minimal user intervention so that each dome looks the same day after day.

"We've taken auto-alignment to the next level," says Steve McCullough, Vice President and General Manager of Barco's Simulation division. "No one else in the industry has such a sophisticated solution for light-valve technology projection systems. We demonstrated the AutoAlign's capabilities on LCD projection systems at our 2004 Technology Expo, and industry as well as military leaders from around the globe were impressed by its performance and versatility."

Barco's AutoAlign is the sole system that offers the ability to control more than just CRT projectors. After successfully perfecting AutoAlign for raster/calligraphic and faceted displays, Barco is leading the way for light-valve technology. Barco R&D and market research teams are working closely with key simulation centers and the military to explore its use in various simulation and military flight training environments.

While AutoAlign is groundbreaking in its ability to control light-valve technology projection systems, it is also the top of its class in CRT projection system control. Daimler Chrysler chose an AutoAlign system for their driving simulator in Berlin, Germany. Daimler's drive simulator utilizes actual car models and is powered by six Barco 909 projection systems, five in the front and one in the rear. This highly sophisticated simulator is used for vehicle testing and researching driver behavior. AutoAlign's geometry, convergence, co-alignment of edges, intensity, contrast, and focus will enable shorter set up and maintenance times.

"Barco's AutoAlign is the ultimate solution for complicated alignments like the multi-faceted display systems in use at Luke Air Force Base," says Phil Laney, Market Development Manager for Barco Simulation. "The AutoAlign quickly realigns 10 of the 11 out-of-window displays on each dome with a push of a button to a fidelity level beyond what the human eye could achieve." The F-16 dodecahedron dome simulators are now operational with Barco AutoAlign systems to control a combination of 10 Barco 808s and Barco 908 CRT projection systems. The AutoAlign camera gimbal is mounted on a removable stand at the eye point. Lockheed Martin operates the Barco AutoAlign to control geometry, convergence, facet-to-facet edge co-alignment, focus, brightness, and contrast settings. One of the most extraordinary features of the Barco AutoAlign is its ability to work with a mixture of projection systems for easy upgrades and spares configuration. This reduces maintenance costs and minimizes spares inventory.

The Barco AutoAlign also has a proven track record in numerous raster/calligraphic projection system installations. Lockheed Martin uses Barco AutoAlign systems for its C-130 simulators. Seven systems are now in place with an additional two systems planned for this year at Pope Air Force Base and another military location. Current installations include four AutoAlign systems at Little Rock Air Force Base, one system at Dyess Air Force Base, one system at McChord Air Force Base, and another system at the Minnesota National Guard (MANG) base. The C-130 Hercules Pilot Trainer is a wrap-around visual display system featuring computer-based Navigation and a Communication and Planning system (NAVCAP). It will provide academic and simulator training for C-130 weapon system aircrews. AutoAlign will control contrast and brightness, convergence, geometry, and focus across five Genesis series projectors.

Other recently completed military installations include a Thales Lynx helicopter simulator at Middle Wallop where the United Kingdom's School of Army Aviation provides the highest level of training for potential military helicopter pilots. Thales relies on the AutoAlign system for their B737 Wedgetail simulator used by the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). The RAAF AutoAlign systems handle a full range of adjustments, including geometry, convergence, focus, edge matching/blending, black level and peak intensity, color and brightness uniformity, and co-alignment of target projectors. Thales is very satisfied with Barco's AutoAlign technology and has purchased a system for its Sea King simulator and is in discussion for other possible installations.

About Barco
Barco, an international company headquartered in Kortrijk, Belgium, provides visualization and display solutions for professional markets. Barco designs and develops solutions for large screen visualization, display solutions for life-critical applications, and systems for visual inspection. Barco is active worldwide and has its own facilities for Sales & Marketing, Customer Support, R&D and Manufacturing in Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. Barco is quoted on Euronext Brussels and is a BEL 20 and a Next 150 company (Euronext: BAR; Reuters: BARBt.BR; Bloomberg: BAR BB).
www.barco.com

NADS at University of Iowa
The National Advanced Driving Simulator at The University of Iowa is the world's most advanced ground vehicle simulator. A shared-use research facility operated by The University of Iowa, The NADS was created to conduct research, which will help save lives, reduce the costs of vehicle crashes, and lead to better and safer vehicles, roadways, and drivers.
www.nads-sc.uiowa.edu

Daimler Chrysler
DaimlerChrysler is one of the world's leading automotive companies. Our strategy rests on 4 pillars: a global presence, a strong brand portfolio, a comprehensive product range and technological and innovative leadership. The Berlin plant is DaimlerChrysler AG's longest-running production plant. It is located in the south of the capital and has a tradition stretching back over 100 years, is part of the Mercedes Car Group and produces engines and components for the Maybach, Mercedes-Benz and smart brands.
www.daimlerchrysler.de

Lockheed Martin
Lockheed Martin Corporation, an advanced technology company, was formed in March 1995 with the merger of two of the world's premier technology companies, Lockheed Corporation and Martin Marietta Corporation. Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin employs about 130,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced technology systems, products and services.
www.lockheedmartin.com

Thales
Thales is a leading international electronics and systems group, serving defence, aerospace, security and services markets worldwide. The Group employs 61, 500 people throughout the world and generated revenues of 10.3 billion euros in 2004.

www.thalesgroup.com/training-simulation

 
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