Mixed Reality (MR) ready aircraft

Host department: Department of Computer Science
Project supervisor: Dr. Y.K. Choi (Department of Computer Science)
Project background
Student team joined Fly Your Idea Competition organized by Airbus, in the sub-category of Mixed Reality. Structured in 3 rounds of evaluations, the competition exposes students to the challenges and opportunities of aerospace engineering, along with the rich and diverse background of Airbus. The student has outranked hundreds of teams and worked on building a prototype and business model for bringing the state-of-the-art Mixed Reality to customers.
Airlines have started removing IFE monitors to promote fuel economy and give way to handheld devices while losing traction and loyalty from passengers. Meanwhile, a US$300-million market of MR technology has just propelled recently and will soon become a new standard of entertainment. Under this narrative, MR ready aircraft opens up a huge variety of entertainment options to passengers and convincing business opportunities to airlines. Yet, without a standardized platform, MR developers are less interested in projects around aircraft, a subject with tedious regulations and tremendous know-how of engineering. SKYLINER is a middleware designed for MR developers to create and publish their work on board, where passengers and crews can benefit from limitless creations. The platform includes components that are crucial to developers, like spatial understanding of the cabin environment, and compliance to regulations. SKYLINER would soften the grind during the development stage and take care of the needs of partners in MR industry. MR ready aircraft and SKYLINER mean an opportunity of partnership with IT giants, reinforce the pledge of offering premium service and keep AIRBUS at the helm in the market.

Team information

Project leader: Kelvin Ng, BEng(ME)

Team member(s): Angel Woo, BEng(CompSc); Edmond Yip, BEng(ME); Jonathan Ching, BEng(CompSc)

Project details and process
Since September 2018, the team had held regular weekly meetings with the project supervisor to brainstorm ideas for the 1st round and draft a proposal for the competition. Proceeding to the 2nd round, students further validated their Mixed Reality (MR) proposal by experimenting with different MR products in the market and reached out to end-users to learn about their experiences.

The team is one of the top 51 teams short-listed to the 2nd round of the competition. The team was also selected for the top 10 most creative video.

Students learnt to apply and demonstrate knowledge and skills in MR as well as aviation applications. Throughout the preparation process of the competition, they acquired the skill to plan, design and implement mixed reality prototypes with appropriate software and hardware. They also gained precious experience in teamwork between members of different expertise.
The MR headsets used by the team will be shared with other undergraduate students for more experiments on MR and its applications. The report and video produced by the team would serve as a valuable reference for students who are interested in joining the Airbus Fly Your Ideas competition again in the near future. This competition experience would unlock opportunities for the Computer Science department to introduce courses related to Extended Reality (XR) technologies.
Project poster

Dr. Loretta Y.K. Choi

(Project supervisor, Department of Computer Science)

The students have demonstrated great team spirit and their eager to learn about new technologies. It is great to see them applying knowledge learnt in school to different aspects of the project. Students also got to visit local XR companies and meet with experts in the field as well as the Airbus engineering team. Although they didn’t make past the second round, I believe they can make great use of their experience gained in this project and share them along with other students.

Angel Woo (BEng(CompSc), II)

Taking part in the Airbus Fly Your Ideas Competition gave me the chance to understand how technology could empower the aviation industry. By communicating with our mentor working at Airbus and our supervisor Dr Loretta Choi, our team learnt a lot about Extended Reality (XR) technologies and was excited to even get the equipment for prototyping our proposal. I could still recall how we had meetings a day in and day out just a week before the deadline in order to refine our infographics and video. I felt grateful to have encountered a great team and supervisor. This competition experience was super intensive, but equally rewarding.

Kelvin Ng (BEng(ME), IV)

Before participating in the Airbus Fly Your Ideas Competition, I had finished an engineering internship in an airline and studied in the United States for an exchange program specialized in aeronautical engineering. Immersing myself in the aviation industry, I understand some pain points of the industry and believe that the solutions for all those challenges lie in creativity from multi-discipline. The competition rendered me an opportunity to explore the possibility of improvement in the daily operation of the aviation field offered by mixed reality and its limitation. I felt honoured to work alongside with computer science students, aviation and mixed reality expert to work on a proposed solution for unleashing the power of mixed reality and our imagination.

Edmond Yip (BEng(ME), IV)

Airbus’ Fly Your Idea is a competition about developing a solution for problems facing the aviation industry and has been supported by many prestigious institutions. This competition deepened my understanding of aviation technology and industry trends. It is a precious experience to develop ideas, prototype, conduct research and pitch the ideas on the Internet.

Jonathan Ching (BEng(CompSc), V)

Airbus Fly your Idea competition has given our team the perfect experience to get first-hand knowledge in the aerospace industry. Through this experience, I have come to appreciate the complexity of the industry but the surprisingly clear and organized engineering efforts done by the brilliant engineers.
As a team, we have explored a lot of potential application of Augmented Reality headsets in the setting of aircraft. With the support of vis-lab, we were enabled to test out various types of googles that are state of the art.


We would like to extend our sincere gratitude and appreciation for all of the support we received from our donors, which include:

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