VR2 is located in the basement of the Zochonis Building. It comprises of a 6.5 x 3.7 metre playspace suitable for room-scale virtual environments and motion tracking. We have a wide variety of equipment available to support studies wishing to use virtual reality for research.
Available equipment includes:
Head-mounted displays (HMDs)
These headsets are used to view the Virtual Reality environments/experiments that are created. We have 2 base stations permanently mounted on the walls of the lab for use with the Vive headsets. One of the Vive headsets also incorporates Binocular Eye Tracking at 250Hz.
For untethered VR, we have a wireless adapter for the Vive HMD, as well as 2 Oculus Quest headsets that don’t require a PC or any external tracking systems to provide full 6DOF (degrees of freedom).
- Oculus Rift (x 2)
- Oculus Quest (x 2)
- Oculus Quest Pro (x 1)
- HTC Vive (x 2)
- HTC Vive with built-in SMI eye tracking (x 1)
- HTC Vive wireless adapter (x 1)
- Valve Index (x 1)
OptiTrack (optical motion capture system)
We have 8 cameras permanently mounted around the lab. The OptiTrack cameras are probably the most important equipment in the lab, giving us the ability to track the movements of a participant or object to within sub-millimetre accuracy. The standard mounts for the cameras are located around the ceiling of the room, with 2 additional mount locations in the bottom corners of the 3D wall for wall-based experiments that require tracking.
- Frames per second (FPS) = 360 max
- Field of view (FOV) = 70°
- Resolution: 1664 × 1088
- Valve Index tracking clip (x 1)
- Motion capture suit (x 1)
Zotac wearable backpack PCs
These wearable PCs enable the user to wear the PC that the HMD is connected to, giving the user freedom to move around the lab without being tethered to a desktop PC. They are also set up to receive the positional data wirelessly from the OptiTrack camera system.
- Intel Quad-core i7 CPU (2.8GHz)
- 16GB RAM
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 GPU (8GB VRAM)
Stone developer PCs
These PCs are used for development using Vizard, Unity and Unreal. Steam VR and Oculus home are also installed, so they can be used for both the Rift and Vive HMDs.
- Intel Quad-core i7 CPU (3.4GHz)
- 32GB RAM
- Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 GPU (12GB VRAM)
Dexta Robotics Dexmo Gloves
These forced-feedback gloves make it possible to feel virtual objects as though they were physical. They are connected by Bluetooth and can be used within Unity and Unreal.
3D projection system
We have a 3.4 x 2.2 metre rear-projected screen to display 2D/3D stimuli using the Optoma projector. This projector is capable of projecting interleaved stereo frames to be viewed using the Optoma ZF2300 3D Glasses, enabling stereoscopic viewing of 3D stimuli on a 2D display surface.
Logitech G29 Driving Force steering wheel
A dedicated steering wheel and foot pedals that can be used with driving simulation research, either in VR or using the 3D wall.
We use three different software programmes for developing and one for motion capture/ tracking.
- Vizard is Python-based VR software used to develop VR scenarios, developed to be used mainly for research and business purposes.
- Unity is software used historically for gaming, but which has excellent tools and support for creating realistic scenes for VR and also supports most HMD’s and their controllers. It uses C# as its programming language
- Unreal is a C++ engine designed for high-end graphics and realistic materials. As with Unity it has support for most current HMD’s and also has Blueprints, which is a way to construct scenes and environments without any or much programming ability.
- Motive is the software we use with the Optitrack camera system. It enables us to create rigid bodies for the items we want to track and also supports HTC Vive and Oculus Headsets.