Virtalis State-of-the-art Visualisation Equipment Arrives at Nottingham Trent University
Nottingham Trent University’s School of Computing and Informatics has taken delivery of two Virtalis advanced visualisation systems. These comprise a portable StereoWorks system and a workstation complete with Head Mounted Display and tracking system able to give a complete immersive experience.
Dr Wayne Cranton, a reader in visual technology at the university, said: “We have recently launched some new BSc courses – including Information and Communications Technology, Imaging and Display Technology, Computing and Cybernetics and Digital Media Technology. These include modules that develop the knowledge and skills necessary to understand how modern ICT systems can handle, process and deliver high quality visual information. Common threads, like the study of how image display can affect visual perception, are greatly enhanced when one is able to demonstrate the power of Virtual Reality (VR).”
The applications that MSc students at Nottingham Trent are developing using the new hardware and software are being used to help school children from the Midlands appreciate the history and craftsmanship of Southwell Minster. The portable StereoWorks system has been used to develop a 3D fly through with carvings coming to life to guide Key Stage One and Two children around the cathedral. Dr. Cranton takes up the story: “We recently unveiled our virtual guide at the Minster and people were, frankly, gobsmacked. Many agreed that VR is a wonderful way to get over extra information and to encourage more people to come and look at the real building. As a result, we have developed a web-based version which gives a flavour of what we have achieved and allows users to take a virtual walk around the Minster from their home computer.”
Dr. Cranton concluded: “We are working with our students to develop a wide range of projects on our Virtalis platforms. Some will look at differing visualisation techniques and the physiological aspects of this technology; while others will create educational virtual environments or attempt to develop the use of 3D in areas where it will be of greatest benefit, such as in X-ray imaging of baggage to counter terrorist threat. The portability of our new systems is already proving most advantageous, allowing us to showcase our work widely and ensure we get the most out of it by raising utilisation rates.”