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Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering – Electrical & Computer Engineering


Rowan Virtual Reality Lab

The Rowan Virtual Reality Lab in the South Jersey Technology Park features a room-sized CAVE®, virtual reality (VR) environment. Inside a group of users wear stereo glasses to visualize, navigate and interact with a 3-D virtual environment that is created using a combination of digital light processing projectors, an infra-red position tracking system, data gloves and associated computer hardware and software.

The Rowan VR Lab provides an immersive surround-screen, surround-sound virtual world in which viewers can explore by moving around and grabbing objects using the data glove. Unlike users of the video-arcade type of VR system, Rowan VR Lab users do not wear helmets to experience VR. Instead, they put on lightweight stereo glasses and walk around inside the CAVE® as they interact with virtual objects. Multiple viewers often share virtual experiences and easily carry on discussions inside the CAVE®, enabling medical and engineering faculty to exchange discoveries and ideas. The real power of Rowan’s VR Lab environment is the ability to mix virtual reality imagery with real devices (like one's hand, for instance). CAVEs® have been used worldwide for advanced visualization, virtual prototyping, modeling and simulation for a variety of applications spanning transportation, infrastructure, energy and biotechnology.

The CAVE® virtual reality environment is the only such system in any university in the State of New Jersey. Installed in 2009 in the South Jersey Technology Park and supported by research grants totaling $2.0-M to date, The Rowan VR Lab has made a significant impact on Rowan University’s research, teaching and outreach programs. The Rowan VR Lab was featured on the Discovery Science Channel. It is one of the most visited attractions on campus and has hosted over 200-events and 2,000-visitors.

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