Halden Virtual Reality Centre


HVRC provides facilities for identifying and testing novel applications of emerging VR & AR technologies. The focus is on design, training, and optimisation of safety-critical work in 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 typically use similar techniques to those applied in HAMMLAB. These include human and system performance measures. We measure for instance 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 the teamwork aspects.

Lab Facilities

The lab is located in a purpose-built room with a raised computer floor. There are 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 space supports wireless tracking of three simultaneous users. Wearing wireless HTC VIVE PRO 2 or tethered Varjo XR3/VR3 VR headsets, they can collaborate in a shared virtual environment while in a shared physical space. We have a variety of other XR headsets from Pico, Meta, HTC, Microsoft and others.

We mostly use Android and iOS tablets for mobile mixed and augmented reality work. For wearable AR concepts, we mostly use the Trimble XR10 (with Microsoft Hololens 2).

Other notable equipment includes:

  • Barco ProjectionDesign Stereoscopic projectors
  • 65” multitouch display
  • Leica BLK360 laser-scanner
  • Artec Leo handheld scanner
  • FormLabs Form 2 Resin-based 3D printer
  • A variety of 3D input devices

Our VR/AR software testbed facilitates rapid prototyping of application concepts and novel 3D interaction techniques. It provides comprehensive logging of session data to support rapid post-session analysis of usability studies.

HVRC Staff

VR&AR department staff has a broad range of academic backgrounds including computer science, human factors, human-centred design, mathematics, informatics, product design, and mechanical engineering. We take a multi-disciplinary approach to both application concept development and conducting experiments, drawing on expertise in other departments and divisions at IFE, and beyond, for industrial domain knowledge.