Canadian machine vision firm to help NFL create 3D “Matrix-style” replay footage

Teledyne Dalsa’s 4k Falcon2 cameras set to drive Replay Technologies’ freeD system at Dallas Cowboy’s home opening game.

Comments Off on Canadian machine vision firm to help NFL create 3D “Matrix-style” replay footage July 31, 2013
Mike McLeod

13-aug-Replay-Dalsa-camera-360Every sports fan loves the slow-motion replay, especially following a controversial call. But what if you could pause the action, zoom in and out and even sweep around the action, Matrix-style? Waterloo, ON-based Teledyne DALSA is helping make it happen.

The Canadian machine vision equipment maker announced that it is partnering with Replay Technologies to provide its cameras and frame grabbers for deployment of Replay’s freeD sports replay system at AT&T Stadium (nee Cowboys Stadium) in Arlington, TX.

Using Dalsa’s high definition cameras, Replay’s freeD system works similar to creating a 3D model from a series of regular photos combined with a series of Microsoft Xbox Kinect sensors, but on a much larger and more sophisticated scale. In addition to standard 2D video, a series of cameras also store depth data and color textures of the action, from many angles.

The depth data from multiple cameras is then combined to form 3D models of the players over which the color texture pixels are applied. The resulting 3D photo-realistic renders allow replay of a touchdown reception, for instance, to be played back or reviewed from angles where there wasn’t a physical camera.

Replay Technologies' FreeD system will use 24 of these Teledyne DALSA Falcon2 cameras capture close-up 3D replay video in HD quality at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas during the Dallas Cowboy's home opening game.

At AT&T Stadium, the freeD system will use 24 of Teledyne DALSA Falcon2 cameras –12 cameras positioned around each end of the field. The camera’s 12 megapixel, 4K-resolution will allow the system to capture close-ups in HD quality. According to Replay Technologies, Teledyne Dalsa’s cameras and Xcelera frame grabbers were selected to deliver the speed and resolution required for this application.

The freeD system was first used in 2012 at the Players Championship PGA golf tournament and at the London 2012 Olympic Games gymnastics competition. The system is currently deployed at Yankee Stadium in New York and is a regular feature of Yankees home games broadcasted by the YES Network with an average of 30 second rendering time.

The freeD replay system will be featured during NBC Sunday Night Football’s broadcast of the first Dallas Cowboys NFL home game versus the New York Giants on September 8th.

YESVIEW from Replay on Vimeo.