Iowa Governor Appoints New Economic Development Director

Iowa State Innovation Mainstreams Virtual Reality

Iowa 3-D Firm Merges with Chief Competitor for Global Leadership

University Researchers Developing Dental Simulator

Des Moines Arts Festival Named Nearly the Best in U.S.

Comments? Ideas? Send us an email.

To have your name removed from our Iowa Beat mailing list, please select "Unsubscribe" below.


January/February 2003

Iowa State Innovation
Mainstreams Virtual Reality

 Virtual Reality (VR) was once a technology reserved only for science fiction. Today, an innovation by Iowa State University may bring it into everyday life.

Faculty, students and staff at Iowa State's Virtual Reality Applications Center (VRAC) have designed and built a low-cost, portable virtual reality system. VRAC was able to provide the best quality image at the lowest cost by using standard components from personal computers, meeting-room video projectors and other off-the-shelf items. Additionally, it uses polarized light and inexpensive polarized glasses to create the stereoscopic, 3-D images necessary for virtual reality.

Corporations are already seizing the opportunity for affordable VR systems to aid in the visualization of scientific, engineering and manufacturing data. Proctor & Gamble has plans to install a VR system based on VRAC's new design.

The system can be set up in two hours in any office environment. It can be made into an immersive system with four walls, or an ultra-wide, 32-foot-long display.