The Society for Imaging Science and Technology (IS&T) and Image Engineering GmbH & Co. KG announce that the 2015 Image Engineering Innovation Award (IEIA) is given to Javier Garcia-Monreal, Alex Kipman, Alexander Shpunt, and Zeev Zalevsky for the development of Breakthrough 3-D Sensing Technologies and Products. The award recognizes the innovation in 3-D image sensing developed by PrimeSense and Microsoft and incorporated in the Microsoft Kinect sensor for the Xbox 360 game console. This breakthrough enabled users to control games by gestures and actions.
“This award recognizes four talented innovators, from four different organizations, who pioneered the image depth acquisition hardware and software used in the Microsoft Kinect sensor,” says Ken Parulski, chair of the IEIA award committee. “Their creativity and teamwork enabled Kinect to become the first successful mass-market 3D camera, and the fastest-selling new consumer electronics product ever created.”
3-D images are sensed by an Infrared CMOS image sensor, which captures images of a speckle pattern created using a low-power IR laser and a diffraction grating. The reflected pattern is captured by the IR sensor and correlated with a reference pattern, to produce a depth map of the objects in the color video image.
The Kinect sensor sold 8 million units within the first 60 days of its introduction, making it the most successful 3-D camera. It uses depth sensing technology developed by Zeev Zalevsky at Bar Ilan University, Javier Garcia-Monreal at the University of Valencia, and Alexander Shpunt and his colleagues at PrimeSense in Israel, as well as gesture and face recognition software developed by Alex Kipman and his colleagues at Microsoft.