Halden Virtual Reality Centre
The main purpose of HVRC is to identify potentially useful applications of emerging technologies and to investigate issues and address identified through experimental research and feedback from practical experience. The focus is on complex industrial applications.
IFE’s virtual reality (VR) laboratory is located next to HAMMLAB. It is an experimental facility for applied research and a testbed for developing novel spatial computing applications.
What is HVRC’s Purpose?
The main purpose of HVRC is to provide facilities for identifying and testing novel applications of emerging VR & AR technologies, The focus is on design, training, and optimisation of safety-critical industrial environments. The close proximity to HAMMLAB enables joint experiments, where HAMMLAB is used to simulate a control centre and the VR lab is used to simulate activities in a digital twin of the facility being controlled.
For usability studies and formal experiments, we use similar techniques for measuring human performance as in HAMMLAB. These include human and system performance measures, teamwork, mental workload, task complexity, sense of presence, social presence, spatial presence, and usability. Most studies are comparative or explorative in nature, with a focus on usability and human performance in a teamwork setting.
The lab is located in a purpose-built room with raised computer floor. There is 100 square metres of floor space (9m x 11m). An 8m by 8m area of the lab supports room-scale location tracking for immersive VR. Approximately 6m x 6m of the tracked space supports three simultaneous users wearing wireless HTC VIVE PRO VR-headsets that can work together in a collaborative virtual environment. One of the VR-headsets has eye-tracking installed.
We mostly use Android and iOS tablets for augmented reality work. For wearable AR concepts, we use Microsoft Hololens and ODG R7 headsets.
Other notable equipment include:
- Barco ProjectionDesign Stereoscopic projectors
- 65” multitouch display
- Leica BLK360 laser-scanner
- FormLabs Form 2 Resin-based 3D printer
- A variety of 3D input devices
Our VR/AR software platform facilitates rapid prototyping of application concepts and novel 3D interaction techniques, and provides comprehensive logging of session data to support rapid post-session analysis of usability studies.
VR&AR department staff has a broad range of academic backgrounds including computer science, human factors, mathematics, informatics, electrical engineering, and mechanical engineering. We take a multi-disciplinary approach to both application concept development and conducting experiments, drawing on expertise in other departments and sectors at IFE, and beyond, for industrial domain knowledge.
Virtual and Augmented Reality,