The purpose of i-blueCulture is the research and development of new technological methods. First, a 3D underwater digitization method will be created in a completely efficient, effective and safe way, with the use of scuba divers and then, the digital reconstruction of the marine space will offer a virtual “tour” for non-divers. As a result, the user experience will be immersive, achieving exceptional detail in the difficult and variable underwater conditions, both in terms of capturing the image of the underwater environment in detail and the user moving within the broadcasted underwater live image. In addition, the system intends to be efficient, because any underwater work has much higher implementation costs than on land, as well as constraints due to hyperbaric conditions of the marine environment, while optimizing the required underwater routes and minimizing the time required for underwater operations for achieving the desired digitization model. Finally, the system will remain safe, as human underwater activity always carries risks that will be minimized.
The business partners of the project are directly connected with the utilization of the research and technological innovative results. DiveSkopelos plans to apply the existing technology on site in its area of activity in the Northern Sporades and offer digitization services using the results of the project to agencies within the Mediterranean, such as diving centers, diving parks, underwater museums, marine archeological institutes and sea navigation boats. ArxNet plans to take advantage of both the technology it will acquire through research to make the user’s mobile device independent of the movement of the medium in which it is located, as well as to have significant revenue from users downloading the respected applications from online app stores. CERTH plans to establish a spin-off company for the exploitation of the respective technologies that will be developed, or even co-exploit the complete i-blueCulture system with the project partners. In particular, we refer to two main innovative technologies produced: the ability to move within a three-dimensional live broadcasted image in a marine environment and the development of the technology and methods for efficiently and effectively digitizing 3D marine environments and displaying them in virtual reality with augmented information.