Exploratory Analysis of Augmented Reality Visualization of Right-of-Way Excavation Safety

This project will develop and demonstrate a prototype system for georeferenced augmented reality visualization of buried utility geospatial data and real-time monitoring of an excavator's proximity to buried utilities in its vicinity. Work in Stage 1 will begin with designing a graphics algorithm to place virtual entities in an augmented scene given a user's geographical position and head orientation. The algorithm's accuracy will be validated in a static scenario of a simulated excavation operation and inspection of vicinal underground utilities. The convention of marking underground utilities will be studied and an augmented reality visualization system compatible with Michigan's Miss Dig System and other agencies will be designed. This will lead to the development of a "third-person" augmented reality system for visualizing underground utilities. Visualization methods that obstruct the ground view while rendering utilities underneath will be implemented. Finally, a "first-person" operator-view augmented reality visualization system will be designed and evaluated using known subsurface utility geospatial data records. Work in Stage 2 will begin with investigating current technologies in place to prevent collisions between underground infrastructure and excavator end-effectors, and limitations in current accident prevention practices for buried utility excavation operations will be analyzed. Next, georeferenced three dimensional (3D) models of buried utilities capable of capturing location uncertainty associated with data will be developed through an intuitive visual representation. A framework to represent a real world operation in a 3D virtual world through sensor updated dynamic entities and georeferenced static entities will be developed, while maintaining adequate level of abstraction for effective representation. An interface between real world sensors and 3D equipment articulations will be designed to allow position and orientation update of equipment components through sensor streaming data. A generic user interface to allocate sensor streams to a wide array of 3D articulated equipment will be created to enable real-time visualization of an arbitrary excavation operation. Proximity monitoring methods in computer graphics literature will be reviewed to identify the most suitable approach to provide computational support for a 3D visualization framework. Finally, a real-time geometric proximity monitoring framework will be created for analyzing interactions between buried utilities and excavators, and providing distance and collision information.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 20-30, IDEA

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials

    444 North Capitol Street, NW, Suite 225
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001
  • Project Managers:

    Jawed, Inam

  • Performing Organizations:

    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

    Ann Arbor, MI  United States  48109
  • Principal Investigators:

    Kamat, Vineet

  • Start Date: 20141211
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0
  • Source Data: RiP Project 38324

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01547651
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 20-30, IDEA
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Dec 12 2014 1:01AM