Augmented Reality Solutions for Enhanced Security

The first Blog Post in our new series is provided by our partner Hololight

In today's rapidly evolving technological landscape, Augmented Reality (AR) is taking giant leaps to enhance various sectors, including public and private security operations. The EU-funded APPRAISE project has a clear vision to provide cross-disciplinary tools in big data analytics, artificial intelligence, and advanced visualization that will assist end users in all aspects of their security work. Under the umbrella of APPRAISE, Hololight has successfully developed two groundbreaking immersive solutions. 

The ultimate goal of these innovations? To harness the power of AR to strengthen the synergy between public and private security operators and to enhance the defense of soft targets and public spaces. At its core, Hololight's software solutions are designed to facilitate real-time communication and information sharing through AR, primarily using Microsoft's HoloLens 2 Mixed Reality device. 

Solution 1: Enhanced Visual Awareness (EVA) 

Imagine a security scenario where operators have instant access to critical information, visualized in 3D, right at the scene. Hololight's Enhanced Visual Awareness (EVA) application does just that. This application provides security operators with situational awareness in the field during critical operational scenarios. Security operators wearing HoloLens 2 are able to visualize in 3D information provided by the APPRAISE platform, including key intelligence components such as an image and location of a suspect. Armed with this information, operators can make more informed decisions and coordinate more effectively with other security personnel in real time. 

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The benefit of using EVA is that it provides a more immersive and hands-free experience, giving operators the flexibility to respond to situational events. The technological backbone of the application is its integrated remote rendering and streaming capabilities - enabled by the XR Streaming SDK Hololight Stream - to leverage the processing power of the remote server device to deliver high quality visualizations. Importantly, the connection to the APPRAISE platform was made easier and more effective through the server device rather than the HoloLens 2 itself. This application has already been successfully used in pilot demonstrations. 

Solution 2: Augmented reality Police training Protection Application (APPA) 

Training is the backbone of any security operation. The Augmented reality Police training Protection Application (APPA) ensures that training is not only effective, but also collaborative. Designed for both public and private security officers, APPA provides hands-on training, specifically in the use of replica firearm units in real-time scenarios. Operators using APPA are immersed in an environment where they can safely and effectively practice discharging a replica firearm unit in an incredibly realistic setting for such training. In addition, metrics associated with their proficiency are readily provided as feedback that is collaboratively discussed between public and private professionals after training. This discussion and performance analysis fosters a collaborative atmosphere for these operators from different sectors. This data can also be extracted as pdf and stored for later use, e.g., when creating the next training plan. No user data is being tracked, removing all data privacy concern.  

Another novel feature of this application is the provision of situational bias training to operators. While using this application, operators are presented with a series of realistic avatars with varying characteristics, each avatar representing a soft or hard target. The goal of this component of APPA is to engage the appropriate hard target avatars with the replica firearm unit. As a result, they are challenged to become more aware of their implicit biases and can practice and modify their behaviors. Similar to EVA, this application uses Hololight Stream to ensure high quality AR content is delivered to the operators. This application has been used in three pilot demonstrations and will continue in one more.