Kitchener, ONTARIO — Fakespace Systems Inc., a world leader in immersive visualization systems, announced that it delivered a RAVE (Reconfigurable Advanced Visualization Environment) System to the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio, earlier this month. Installation of the system, which will be used as part of a multi-facility network of collaborative immersive environments, extends Fakespace Systems’ long-term supplier partnership with NASA.
The RAVE was purchased as a part of NASA’s Intelligent Synthesis Environment (ISE) Initiative, which aims to enable geographically dispersed teams of engineers and scientists to collaborate in full sensory environments.
“The ISE Initiative will revolutionize the way the Agency plans, develops and operates its missions,” said Dan Goldin, NASA Administrator in a recent statement to Congress. “ISE will develop the tools to enable NASA to rapidly assess multiple mission concepts and systems design options and predict total life cycle cost, schedule, risk and performance with much greater accuracy than is currently possible.”
At NASA Glenn, the RAVE will be used primarily to explore computational fluid dynamics and structural analysis simulations in an immersive, collaborative environment. As part of the ISE initiative, engineers and researchers at other NASA sites, will utilize broad bandwidth links between systems to share the immersive environment with the Glenn Research Center. This real-time, remote collaboration will allow the researchers to work together as if they were at the same location. Some of the additional NASA facilities using Fakespace Systems displays as part of the ISE program include the Langley Research Center, which has a CAVE installation, and the Marshall Research Center, where an ImmersaDesk M1 system is installed.
“In this era of dramatic advances in computing power, it is essential that government organizations collaborate with industry to make the best use of the tremendous resources now available,” said Dan Wright, president and chief executive officer of Fakespace Systems. “We are very proud to continue a strong collaborative relationship with NASA and contribute to advances in visualization technology to make extremely complex data increasingly accessible for human understanding.”
For more than a decade, NASA has worked with Fakespace Systems and its predecessor companies (Fakespace, Inc. and Pyramid Systems) to secure advanced displays for “sense of presence” viewing and interaction with computer-generated models and simulations. NASA Glenn purchased the very first commercial ImmersaDesk R2 in 1996 and the Fakespace BOOM was originally developed for use at NASA Ames in 1990. In an extension of this long-standing relationship, NASA will continue to support the commercialization of advanced technologies by allowing Fakespace Systems to bring prospective customers and partners to the Glenn Research Center site, and to use real NASA data in demonstrations.
The RAVE system at NASA Glenn consists of three self-contained modules, which can be used as independent stereoscopic projection display systems or in a variety of groupings. Each module features an eight-foot. wide by seven-and-a-half-foot. high rigid rear-projected screen at one end of an 11-ft. deep structure containing one or more high-resolution CRT projectors. Equipped with air casters, the modules can be raised approximately one-inch off the ground, and one or two people can easily roll the units into different viewing configurations. An overhead projector/mirror addition to one module produces images on the floor to enable a four-sided immersive room.
The RAVE is an extremely flexible large-scale system designed for a variety of immersive viewing modalities. When positioned to form an immersive room, angled theater-like configuration, a 24-ft. flat wall, or an L-shaped display, it provides stereoscopic visualizations that appear to have a real dimensional presence when viewed with special shutter glasses. Head tracking and various handheld Fakespace devices for manipulating the computer-generated visions in real-time add to the “virtual reality” effect.
Fakespace Systems provides products for better insight, communications and collaboration in automotive, manufacturing, military, aerospace, geophysical exploration, and scientific research organizations. The company designs and manufactures immersive displays and interactive devices, and integrates complete visualization solutions providing Better Ways to Create and Communicate. Fakespace Systems, a business unit of Electrohome Limited, is headquartered in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada and has U.S. offices in Novi, Michigan; Mountain View and San Diego, California; Columbus, Ohio; and Rockville, Maryland. More information on Fakespace Systems Inc. is available at http://www.fakespacesystems.com .