Large-scale Omnidirectional Treadmill “Omnideck” Installed at VIS

June 28, 2024

New possibilities of pervasive and mobile data exploration for researchers at the Immersion Lab

The Institute for Visualization and Interactive Systems (VIS) and the Cluster of Excellence SimTech at the University of Stuttgart are thrilled to announce the installation of an Omnideck omnidirectional treadmill as the new highlight device of the SimTech Immersion Lab (formerly Pervasive Lab). Funded by SimTech and located in the VIS building, the Omnideck will give researches an opportunity to explore a cutting-edge immersive technology and to experimentally evaluate the concepts developed in SimTech project network 7 (Adaptive Simulation and Interaction).

Seamless interaction with the virtual world

The Omnideck is a state-of-the-art virtual reality platform designed to deliver an unparalleled immersive experience. Its 5-meter diameter is segmented into 16 sections that together create a geometrically perfect hexadecagon. The active surface is composed of robust aluminum rollers. Individual motors, ensuring smooth, synchronized movements and responsive feedback, autonomously drive each of the 16 sections. By integrating with the positional tracking technology of VR headsets, the Omnideck translates real-world movements seamlessly into the virtual realm.

Researchers from VIS and SimTech will use the new platform in various projects.

Taking mobile data analysis to a new level

At the Immersion Lab, the Omnideck is initially going to be used in various projects that will benefit from the new possibilities of pervasive and mobile data explorations. Building on the work from SimTech Project PN7A-1, for instance, researchers will run studies at the intersection of fitness and sports data monitoring by means of the Omnideck, thereby doing away with previous limitations regarding simulated locomotion and movement in virtual environments. Other studies will use the Omnideck to investigate haptics in Virtual Reality by linking haptic feedback devices to the treadmill.

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