imec vzw (headquarters Leuven, Belgium) is the world-leading research and innovation hub in nanoelectronics and digital technologies.
As of October 1st 2016, the digital research and incubation center iMinds has merged with imec into one high-tech research and innovation hub for nanoelectronics and digital technologies, under the name imec. imec’s broadened research and collaboration offering makes it a unique and world-class research center in the field of nanoelectronics, excelling in software and ICT expertise. The broadened innovation center will use this knowledge to develop disruptive technologies and solutions in application areas such as health, smart cities and mobility, logistics and manufacturing, and energy.

The renewed imec organization now brings together nearly 3,500 researchers from all over the world, to make the impossible possible in each of those application areas. It also has access to a unique research infrastructure and an extensive network of local and international industrial and university partners for intensive collaboration. As a trusted partner for companies, start-ups and academia we bring together brilliant minds from all over the world in a creative and stimulating environment.

For this application, imec research groups SMIT, ETRO and EDM participate.

imec-SMIT, at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), is specialized in fundamental, applied and contract research in the area of ICT and media, markets and policy. With currently a staff of over 65 researchers, and an annual turnover of well over 3.5 M€, SMIT is a major research centre in Europe for policy & socio- economic research relating to ICT and media. SMIT specialises in social scientific research on media and ICT, with an emphasis on innovation, policy and socio-economic questions. SMIT research combines user, policy and business analysis with both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies. In order to develop new methodological tools, a continuing dialectic between theory and empirical research is one of the centre’s high-level objectives. ICT and the advent of an information and knowledge society leads to new forms of organising work, education, leisure, social interaction, political participation, health, well-being etc. This way, ICT do impact on every aspect of the life of the ‘networked individual’.

imec-ETRO (Electronics and Informatics), at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, has as the mission to make sense of visionary electronics & computer engineering. ETRO’s research on new devices and sensors, image and multidimensional signal representations, protection, transmission, analysis, processing and visualization is applied in various sectors such as medical imaging, media systems, audio visual signal processing, industrial signal processing and remote sensing. ETRO claims to cover visionary demand-driven and in-depth fundamental research, relevant for most components in ICT systems so that it is in the position to deliver unique solutions and new concepts, leveraging cross-boundary expertise in micro-electronics & photonics, HW-SW co-design and networks & systems.

imec-EDM, the ‘Expertise center for Digital Media’ is an imec ICT research group at UHasselt. We have been conducting research in computer science since 1987. Our research focuses on 2 core competencies: visual computing and human-computer interaction. We are active in the full research continuum: from fundamental to basic and applied research, as well as contractual R&D collaboration. EDM’s key objective is to be a leading research group in human-computer interaction, computer graphics, multimedia networking, visual computing and virtual environments.

Role in the project

In this proposal, imec-SMIT will be responsible for tasks T2.1 and has a strong participation in T2.2 in WP2 related to the professional and end-user requirements. SMIT will lead WP5 on Innovation, dissemination and exploitation, as well as conduct tasks 5.1. on market analysis and strategies for succesful exploitation, 5.2. on business clinics and 5.3. on communication.

imec-ETRO will be involved in WP3 (T3.7), implementing a quality of experience feedback module, which will take end-user information (device, viewpoint, etc.) to maximize the end-user experience within the limitations of bandwidth, delay, and other distribution resources.

imec-EDM will contribute state-of-the-art solid research expertise in omnidirectional video capture, processing and real-time high-quality rendering including stitching, and expertise in efficient GPU implementation. It has built up knowledge in these areas from numerous past and current projects including IP-Racine (FP6 IP), 2020 3D Media (FP7 IP), FINE (FP7 STReP), SCENE (FP7 STReP), Dreamspace (FP7 STReP), ICoSOLE (FP7 STReP), Explorative Television (xTV, IBBT ICON), AIVIE (imec ICON), the imec strategic basic research programme (ISBO), 3 IWT (Flemish agency for Innovation through Science and Technology) doctoral scholarship, two projects financed by the University of Hasselt research fund (UH BOF), and a national science foundation (FWO) research project. imec-EDM previously founded a spin-off company named ‘camargus’ in 2012, that commercialised a high end panoramic multi-camera system for soccer broadcasting. Camargus is now part of kiswe mobile (www.kiswe.com). imec-EDM is the leader of the capture task of ImmersiaTV (T4.2).