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Our Volumetric Capture Studio

Three cameras docked in a white plastic shell, pointing at the viewer

Throughout history, the human love of stories has never waned. The methods used to tell these stories, however, are constantly shifting with the tides of technological innovation. Written language, radio, the cinema: each of these have in turn revolutionized communication and storytelling. Now American University's Institute for IDEAS is advancing a new and equally revolutionary storytelling medium: volumetric content.

Based out of a high-tech studio space, the Institute is developing immersive volumetric content for VR, AR, and other applications. The core of this initiative is the Institute's volumetric capture system, purchased with a $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation. TDesigned by international tech company Tetavi, the volumetric capture studio smoothly transforms recorded performances into high-quality holograms. Tetavi's groundbreaking algorithmic process delivers a detailed, animated model of the subject for deployment across a number of platforms.

A large room with an empty center marked by an x, surrounded by lights and cameras for volumetric capture

Currently the Institute is developing several volumetric content projects using the Tetavi system. "Space Ocean Library" is an interactive VR experience which transports the user to a mystical purgatory built on memory. Exploring the interactable virtual objects around them, users will discover the impact we have on the lives of those around us, even after death. 

"Vera: The Meeting" is a participatory theatrical experience where users take on the role of Vera, a woman reuniting with her somewhat problematic former partner, Robert. Users can embody the character of Vera in a groundbreaking way, not only seeing from her eyes and interacting with Robert verbally, but soon experiencing everything that she does, as the Institute works to incorporate multisensory haptic feedback into the piece.

A white plastic robot's head resting on a table, looking out of frame to the right

The Institute is also pursuing collaborations with musicians, comedians, and other artists to create holographic music videos, performances, and other experiments in entertainment. The core mission of the Institute is to explore and expand the innovative possibilities of holographic and mixed reality experiences, while changing the world one hologram at a time.