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Alumni-founded Pupil Labs Develops Products for Astronauts

A former SMArchS thesis project has found its way into outer space! Pupil Lab, founded by alumni Will Patera and Moritz Kassner (SMArchS Computation, ’12), created custom vision headsets for Space Application Services as part of the Mobile Procedure Viewer (mobiPV) project. The headset captures the astronaut’s field of vision and allows for real-time video to be streamed to mission control where specialists can engage astronauts in real-time consultation and without lengthy delays. Until now, crew-members executed procedures aboard the International Space Station using laptop computers which limited mobility and did not allow for real-time exchange between astronauts and on-the-ground specialists.

The SMArchS thesis, Pupil: Constructing the Space of Visual Attention, was co-authored by Moritz Philipp Kassner and William Rhodes Patera and was overseen by Terry Knight and Patrick Winston in 2012.  The project explored the experience of space through an inquiry into vision; Kassner and Patera developed custom hardware and software to track eye movement and visualization methods to represent this experience of space.

Read Patera and Kassner’s thesis here: dspace.mit.edu/handle/1721.1/72626 and learn more about Pupil Labs, here: pupil-labs.com. Follow the mission on Twitter via the tag #mobipv. All images are courtesy of ESAOperations.