Embodied experiment of levitation in microgravity in a simulated virtual reality environment for science learning
2017 IEEE Virtual Reality Workshop on K-12 Embodied Learning through Virtual & Augmented Reality (KELVAR) (2017)
Los Angeles, CA, USA
March 19, 2017 to March 19, 2017
Kiarash Tamaddon , University of Bremen, Germany
Dirk Stiefs , DLR School Lab Bremen, German Aerospace Center, (DLR), Germany
This paper is about an interactive virtual reality (VR) installation that is designed and developed for school students who visit the DLR School Lab Bremen of the German Aerospace Center. Using immersive VR technology, we put the participants in place (avatar) of an astronaut who is located outside the International Space Station and can see the virtual world through the eyes of this avatar. This experiment let them experience the difference of interactions in microgravity and on the surface of the Earth. It is a visually and physically simulated whole body interactive VR environment where participants can intuitively explore physics of microgravity. The environment provides the possibility to perform reorientation strategies in microgravity. The digital tools that we used included Oculus Rift (DK1) head mounted display, Kinect (version 1) body tracking device, and a computer. We held a small user study to see if the system could improve the participants view about physics of microgravity. The results of this study show that the simulation was beneficial for participants and improved their ability to make better predictions about some interactions in microgravity.
Avatar, Education, Microgravity, HCI, Physics, Science Learning, Simulation, Virtual Reality, Whole Body Interaction
K. Tamaddon and D. Stiefs, "Embodied experiment of levitation in microgravity in a simulated virtual reality environment for science learning," 2017 IEEE Virtual Reality Workshop on K-12 Embodied Learning through Virtual & Augmented Reality (KELVAR), Los Angeles, CA, USA, 2017, pp. 1-5.