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Simulating visual acuity with computer graphics is difficult to achieve. One of the basic barriers is the limitations of viewing devices (monitors, projectors, etc.). It is difficult to generate a sizable image where pixelation is not readily apparent. A hybrid approach is often suggested whereby a large screen at a close distance is utilized for immersing the viewer in the environment. A smaller screen with very high resoution can then be presented which will highlight an area of detailed imagery. Often this approach is combined where an overall animation will have a "picture in picture" which is a zoomed view of a desired target such as a runway marking sign or other object.

Pixelation of the image can be altered to match the limits of resolvability of the human eye based on the distance of the viewer. This is based on the subtended arc of a given object at a certain distance from the eye. Experts in visual acuity and the anatomy of the eye may find that there are many creative ways to approach the problem of simulating human vision for an audience. A gaussian blur approach also might be beneficial but does not have the benefit of beging based on actual calculated geometry (e.g. the size of a pixel based on the subtended arc of resolution of the human eye). Additional geometric distortion of the lens can be accomplished to simulate astigmatism and other visual deficiencies, given sufficient quantitative data is available.

The first video below demonstrates the fundamentals of visual acuity, traffic scanning, and pilot vision concepts with repsect to aviation accident reconstruction. Using our Hudson River 3D environment (modeled previously for the Flight 1549 accident), we demonstrate the target acquisition and "blossom" effects that are integral to mid-air accidents. The animation is in HD and is designed to be viewed on a large screen at a certain distance, to replicate the correct values of subtended arc and resolution of the human eye. This animation was first shown at our booth at the SMU Air Law Symposium in February of 2010 as a demonstration of our accident reconstruction capabilities. The second video demonstrates the pixelation effect described above and highlights a useful technique for conveying the resolution limits of the human eye in a courtroom environment.




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