skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 200341 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Improving Our View of the World: Police and Augmented Reality Technology
Author(s): Thomas J. Cowper; Michael E. Buerger
Date Published: February 2003
Page Count: 67
Sponsoring Agency: US Federal Bureau of Investigation
Washington, DC, 20535
Sale Source: US Federal Bureau of Investigation
Office for Victim Assistance
J. Edgar Hoover Building
935 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC, 20535
United States of America
Type: Program Description (Model)
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This document discusses the use of a new technology called Augmented Reality (AR) in law enforcement.
Abstract: Advanced AR overlays virtual (computer-generated) images onto a person’s real-world field of vision or into a real-world experience in a way that improves and enhances the ability to accomplish a variety of tasks and assignments. Situational awareness is greatly improved, allowing one person equipped with AR technology to do the same amount of work as three unequipped individuals. Wearable AR units are currently under development for use on the battlefield as an enhancement of combat capability by gathering and displaying real-time intelligence, overlaying surrounding geographic information, and maintaining constant communications with team members and headquarters. A possible AR application for policing is, for patrol purposes, real-time language translation along with data on cultural customs and traditions; notification of officers of any local contamination and recommending protective measures; and patrol car operator data and regional traffic management information on a heads-up display. For SWAT operations, AR can be useful in improving situational awareness during dangerous incidents; advanced optics to provide zoom, thermal, and infrared imaging for the location of criminals; and interfacing of human-machine components extending human capabilities to remote locations. AR can aid in criminal investigation by enhancing the ability to gather information and follow leads; providing speaker recognition capability; and coordinating the use of robots, unmanned aerial vehicles, and police officers during surveillance activities. AR can be used to provide realistic training scenarios to simulate dangerous police environments while blending real-world equipment and fellow trainees into the scenario. Supervision can be enhanced by AR in real-time monitoring of patrol activities and during critical incident response to include the monitoring of the physiological status of all personnel. There are still technological hurdles to be overcome before AR can be used as a viable policing asset. 64 references
Main Term(s): Police equipment; Technical evolution
Index Term(s): Automobile surveillance devices; Communications centers; Hands free telecommunications equipment; On-board navigation systems; Police information systems; Science and Technology; Surveillance equipment
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.