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Space Exploration

The EU Cross Drive project is utilising our connective immersive VR facilities to bring together Europe’s space scientists in a virtual Mars, where they can run and experience their simulations in one virtual place.

This project aims to provide a collaborative Virtual/Mixed Reality platform for scientists and engineers involved in planetary science, ranging from geologic and atmospheric studies to rover operation and mission planning. Mars exploration missions have produced huge data sets of potentially immense value for research as well as for planning and operating future missions. However, current expert teams, data and tools are fragmented, leaving little scope for unlocking this value through collaborative activities. The main challenge is therefore to provide new methods and systems for collaborative scientific visualisation and data analysis, space mission planning and operation.

The Octave is connected to other facilities across Europe where scientists can collaborate in a shared virtual environment, whereby the facility is used to visualize the datasets in a more natural way and to ‘teleport’ the scientists to the surface of Mars using telepresence capabilities.

Linkup between Salford and DLR<br />
- VR facility: DLR Powerwall with floor extension + ThinkLab Powerwall<br />
- VR system: Terrain Renderer<br />
- Researchers: Allen Fairchild and Simon Campion (3D Reconstructed) Arturo S. Garcia, Johannes Hummel and Fang Chen (traditional avatars)<br />
- What is shown: A traditional avatar face to face to a 3D reconstructed avatar on the surface of mars (1), a user waving from the octave while he is being 3D reconstructed and streamed to the other facilities (2), a desktop user watching the 3D reconstructed user waving (3), an immersive user in DLR's powerwall watching the 3D reconstructed user waving (4) and an immersive user in the Thinklab's powerwall watching the 3D reconstructed user waving (5)

Crossdrive project was funded by the European Commission and involved the following partners and researchers

DLR-SST
Andreas Gerndt (Coordinator)
Robin Wolff
Janki Dodiya
Wito Engelke
Markus Flatken
Simon Schneegans

DLR-IPR
Klaus Gwinner
Ernst Hauber
Konrad Willner
Lida Fanara

USAL
Terrence Fernando
David Roberts
Arturo S. García
Zihao Tan
Dulcidio Coelho
Simon Campion
Michal Cieciura

ALTEC
Ivano Musso
Michele Cencetti
Carlo Vizzi
Francesco Marziani
Ilenya Salvoni
Giovanni Martucci
Diego Bussi
Eugenio Topa

TASI
Valter Basso
Christian Bar
Lornezo Rocci
Lornezo Valente
Federico Massobrio

INAF
Marco Giuranna
Francesca Altieri
Alessandro Aronica
Shohei Aoki
Roberto Orosei
Monia Rossi
Paulina Wolkenberg

BIRA
Ann Carine Vandaele
Lori Neary
Frank Daerden
Elien Raport
Séverine Robert
Valérie Wilquet

TOHO
Yasumasa Kasaba
Hiromu Nakagawa
Isao Murata
Yasuko Kasai
Takeshi Koroda
Naoki Terada
Takeshi Sakanoi
Hideo Sagawa

Read more about the partners.