“More than just a media lab…”
– Virginia Tech pushes its limits in Virtual Reality in The Cube
Virtual reality enables many interesting applications through the use of motion capture such as virtual training for military purposes, virtual stimuli generation for motor control research, and virtual design.
Our users at Virginia Tech’s Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology took the application of virtual reality and applied it towards human studies in a facility which seemingly exists in an alternate universe.
The Cube has been able to expose the public to VR Sciences through its educational innovation by hosting festivals, such October’s Virginia Tech Science Festival, and by inviting its students and the public to immerse themselves into a world of artistic discovery.
Unique in the world, the Cube is a $15 million, four-story experimental space for research, performance, and public engagement with the arts. Located in the Moss Arts Center, Blacksburg, Virginia, the Cube’s physical infrastructure and technological capabilities allow researchers to collaboratively explore and interact with fullscale virtual environments, from the smallest subatomic particle to massive F5 tornadoes, in real time and through natural movement.
Equipped and operated by the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology (ICAT), the Cube is the only facility in the world to combine these unique technologies in one location.
Record or stream the movement of objects or people, including emotion and interactions, for users to naturally walk through virtual environments. 24 Qualisys Oqus 500+ cameras allow for sub-millimeter accuracy for biomechanical tracking and character
The Cube’s newest addition, the Cyclorama, is a cylindrical projection screen 32 feet in diameter and 16 feet tall that can accommodate up to 40 people, allowing large audiences to experience immersive visualizations without the need for headmounted displays.
With one of the most advanced sound systems in the world, the Cube features 148 speakers, including five subwoofers, suspended from all four levels, offering 360-degree audio capabilities to deliver a fullyimmersive experience which can be controlled by data streamed from Qualisys Track Manager
Create and experience simulated reality first hand and explore virtual environments using head-mounted displays and tablet interfaces. Unlike traditional virtual environments, the Cube allows multi-person collaboration with data visualizations and sonifications. Qualisys Track Manager streams location and rotation data of head-mounted displays to rendering computers for real-time virtual reality immersion.
This story was written and shared by Tanner Upthegrove- Media Engineer at Virginia Tech