EurekAlert: University of Toronto announces an Omni-focus Video Camera, based on a new distance-mapping principle, delivering automatic real-time focus of both near and far field images, simultaneously, in high resolution. This capability can be applied in industry, including manufacturing, medicine, defense, security -- and for the consumer market.
Professor Keigo Iizuka of The Edward S. Rogers Sr. Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering together with consultant Dr. David Wilkes, president of Wilkes Associates, a Canadian high-tech product development company, proposed a novel distance-mapping camera, the Divergence-ratio Axi-vision Camera, abbreviated "Divcam," which is a key component of the new Omni-focus Video Camera.
Omni-focus Video Camera contains an array of color video cameras, each focused at a different distance, and an integrated Divcam. The Divcam maps distance information for every pixel in the scene in real time. A software-based pixel correspondence utility, using prior intellectual property invented by Dr. Wilkes, then uses the distance information to select individual pixels from the ensemble of outputs of the color video cameras, and generates the final "omni-focused" single-video image.
Keigo Iizuka explains that, "the intensity of a point source decays with the inverse square of the distance of propagation. This variation with distance has proven to be large enough to provide depth mapping with high resolution. What's more, by using two point sources at different locations, the distance of the object can be determined without the influence of its surface texture." Divcam is said to be based on this principle.