Virtual Reality Studio opens at UAB to expand education, research into a 3D environment


Newswise — BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Virtually go anywhere and do anything with the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s newest addition to the Lister Hill Library. The Virtual Reality Studiooffers students, faculty and staff access to virtual reality and augmented reality technologies to further advance experiences, education and research.

“The studio provides a platform for students, faculty and staff to experience moments in real time through virtual reality,” said Dorothy Ogdon, assistant professor and Emerging Technologies librarian in the UAB Libraries. “Our goal is to provide technology to support their educational and research needs.”

The new space at UAB is designed to allow students, faculty and staff to encounter virtual and augmented reality tools in an educational environment. It contains three dedicated workstations with VIVE PRO headsets. The workstations use a virtual launcher that is a part of UAB’s participation in the Springboard VR EDU pilot, allowing users to switch between virtual reality experiences easily.

Experiences available via the UAB Virtual Reality Studio include:

  • Calcflow: A VR calculator used to input vector equations, create models and export shapes for 3D printing.
  • 3D Organon VR Anatomy: A VR experience that includes recorded modeling of skeletal movement including flexion, adduction and abduction.
  • The Physiology of the Eye: Available with either Chinese or English narration, this experience provides information on directional terminology for describing the human body, as well as a detailed interactive model of the human eye.
  • COSM: A virtual art experience that models cellular processes and different magnifications.
  • Masterpiece VR: A 3D sculpting and object creation program.
  • Medicalholodeck: A 3D viewer for DICOM imaging. Only demo data sets of the head, a beating heart and the thorax are loaded in this experience on the library’s workstations.
  • Buzz Aldrin Cycling Pathways to Mars: Listen and watch as a Buzz Aldrin hologram provides information on a proposed cycler method for a manned human landing on Mars.
  • Nanome: A collaborative tool for molecular modeling and drug discovery.
  • Google Earth VR: Use this experience to “fly” to any place on Earth using Google maps data. Some highly detailed 3D imaging is available for certain locations in this experience.

To reserve an opportunity to use the Virtual Reality Studio, visit the UAB Libraries guide to Virtual Reality.

About UAB
Known for its innovative and interdisciplinary approach to education at both the graduate and undergraduate levels, the University of Alabama at Birmingham is an internationally renowned research university and academic medical center, as well as Alabama’s largest employer, with some 23,000 employees, and has an annual economic impact exceeding $7 billion on the state. The five pillars of UAB’s mission include education, research, patient care, community service and economic development. UAB is a two-time recipient of the prestigious Center for Translational Science Award. Learn more at www.uab.edu. UAB: Powered by will.

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