Espai Abacus pioneers the application of an AI system for mask use recognition (LogMask) in Spain

Abacus Cooperativa and the University of Barcelona have implemented a pioneering Artificial Intelligence system that allows the detection of mask use and the monitoring of authorized capacity in real time. This technology (LogMask) has been entirely developed by the members of the Consolidated Group Computer Vision & Machine Learning (CVMLUB) of the University of Barcelona.

Abacus Cooperativa and the University of Barcelona have installed this monitoring system in the reopened Espai Abacus, an establishment of over 1,600 m2 that caters to a very diverse public, such as young people, adults, families and children who carry out multiple cultural activities inside it. Due to its characteristics, Espai Abacus constitutes a demanding test-case for this innovative technology.

The results are very satisfactory so far, as detection accuracy has increased with respect to the development phase, reaching a reliability of more than 99% in the detection of mask use.

LogMask is based on Artificial Intelligence, Deep Learning, and Big Data techniques that allow real-time computerized image analysis. This technology distinguishes visual traits of images by looking for patterns that detect eyes and facial features to find faces, and basic shape and colour characteristics of masks, as well as the mouth, to determine whether a person is wearing a mask or not. In addition, it does so without keeping data or images of the analysed faces, it simply locates the use of a mask in real time, thus complying with personal data protection.

According to Miguel Ángel Oliva, general manager of Abacus Cooperativa, “the use of this innovative technology offered by LogMask in a facility the size of Espai Abacus allows us to further increase protection measures against COVID-19 for partners and customers“. Oliva considers that “in addition, its high reliability makes it easier not to dedicate so much staff to surveillance tasks“.

According to Petia Radeva, professor of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at the UB and leader of the team of researchers who have developed LogMask, “Espai Abacus is ideal for demonstrating the effectiveness of our technology in a real setting, both because of the size of the establishment and because of the significant volume of traffic and the physical diversity of people there. The results are proving very rewarding.”

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