The Extended Reality (XR) Lab is the hub in the College of Aviation for the development and introduction of virtual, augmented, and mixed reality experiences. The XR Lab works with faculty and staff to support the adoption and development of Extended Reality applications — a term that encompasses all forms of spatial computing, such as virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) — in courses offered in the college.
The XR Lab strives to ensure that the student learning experience is excellent and can serve to better prepare students to enter the aviation workforce. Putting this technology into students’ hands early provides hands-on experiences and an augmented learning experience to serve as supplemental content to the lessons they learn in the classroom.
The XR Lab also works with student and faculty researchers to provide a controlled environment for XR research conduction. The XR Lab also supports third party research and grants, such as with the Office of Naval Research on a grants dealing with cybersecurity training for naval ROTC midshipmen. Potential research topics include: pre/post flight operations, checklist memorization, three-dimensional navigation, airfield safety, cognitive process and transfer of training.
- Valve Index VR System, consisting of a head mounted display, two hand controllers with haptic feedback and two IR beacons.
- Microsoft HoloLens 2 Headset, a mixed reality device that enables hand interactions in augmented and mixed reality experiences.
- Cessna 172 Preflight VR, a complete C-172 walkaround in virtual reality.
- Tread VR, changing the tire of a Cessna 150 in virtual reality.
- Carburetor Replacement VR, training aviation maintenance science students how to replace the carburetor on an aircraft.
- Mission: ISS allows students to visit the International Space Station in VR.
- Earthlight: Spacewalk enables students to perform light maintenance on the ISS.