Xilinx Virtex-4 FPGA Speeds 3D Imaging by 12x

Xilinx, Inc. (Nasdaq: XLNX), in collaboration with Dimensional Imaging, Ltd., and the FPGA High Performance Computing Alliance (FHPCA), showcased its latest Virtex(TM)-4 FPGA based technology demonstration for high-speed computing. The new technology leverages the high-performance features of Xilinx Virtex-4 devices to accelerate compute-intensive 3D and 4D digital imaging algorithms by up to 12 times, enabling supercomputing performance in a compact platform that communicates with a host PC through a PCI Express(R) interface. Target applications include facial analysis and recognition, biometrics, digital entertainment and advanced orthodontics.

Today’s news opens the door for non-computer specialists to take advantage of the performance of supercomputer clusters and provides tremendous improvement in multiple applications including homeland security, motion picture production, digital gaming, and advanced medical treatments. Attendees of this week’s IFSEC can view the demonstration in action at Silica’s Stand #18177, Hall 12, at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham, United Kingdom.

“In 3D imaging applications, FPGA-based computing will enable greater than 12 times faster execution of Dimensional Imaging’s DI3D(TM) tools, allowing analyses for applications ranging from medical treatments to security biometrics to be performed significantly faster than a conventional software processing model,” said Dr. Colin Urquhart, chief executive officer at Dimensional Imaging. “For image processing on full-motion video, this technology will enable dramatic enhancements in digital entertainment by allowing rapid, accurate modeling of human features to enhance special effects. Other applications will include life-like simulations of real actors in electronic games.”

Dimensional Imaging’s DI3D(TM) technology uses standard digital still cameras (DSCs) to capture one or more stereo pairs of images. The FPGA-based hardware processor uses the DSC data to generate a high resolution 3D surface image, which can be easily recorded or manipulated in a variety of ways. Processing in real-time is achievable, enabling 4D — or 3D video — performance at full frame rates.

Established in 2004, The FHPCA is dedicated to the development of high performance computing solutions using Xilinx FPGAs to deliver unprecedented levels of computational performance. FPGA based computing is an emerging technology, currently used for leading edge applications, such as military signal processing, high speed machine vision and bioinformatics where the processing demands of the applications are difficult to meet using conventional microprocessor based technology. There is growing interest in FPGA-based high performance computing for applications such as Genomics, Seismic Processing and Large Scale Simulations where existing microprocessor based solutions demand space, power and money which means that few users have the computing power that they require.

About Dimensional Imaging Ltd
Founded in 2002 and based in Glasgow, Scotland, Dimensional Imaging Ltd is a leading supplier of human body three dimensional surface image capture and analysis systems. The company’s highly innovative Di3D(TM) passive stereo photogrammetry technology delivers ultra-high resolution 3D surface images from one or more stereo pairs of instantaneously captured digital stills images. Dimensional Imaging supplied systems are already in use in 10 countries over four continents world-wide for a range of applications such as oral and maxillofacial surgery, orthodontics, burns treatment, facial recognition and entertainment. The company is also developing groundbreaking 4D surface image capture technology, which is capable of capturing 3D video sequences of dynamically changing surfaces.

About Xilinx Virtex Series FPGAs
The Xilinx Virtex-4 family of domain optimized FPGAs delivers more options, higher performance and lower power than any other FPGA family available today. The Virtex-4 FX platform features the industry’s only dual 32-bit embedded PowerPC(R) processors running at up to 450MHz and delivering over 700 Dhrystone MIPs each, while providing a three-fold performance advantage over processors in competing FPGAs.

Named Product and Innovation of the Year by EDN Magazine, the Virtex-5 family represents the fifth generation in the award-winning Virtex product line. Built upon the industry’s most advanced 65nm triple-oxide technology, breakthrough new ExpressFabric(TM) technology and proven ASMBL(TM) architecture, the Virtex-5 family includes four domain-optimized platforms for high-speed logic, digital signal processing (DSP), embedded processing and serial connectivity applications. Xilinx is now shipping 13 devices across three platforms (LX, LXT, SXT). Devices may be purchased online or through Xilinx distributors.

About Xilinx
Xilinx, Inc. is the worldwide leader of programmable logic solutions.