Technology

Virtual reality brings university’s planned science facility to life

5 November 2014

Visitors, students and staff at a recent university open day were able to experience a new science facility ahead of construction thanks to the use of a virtual reality application.

Wolverhampton University appointed 3D and BIM expert Seeable to carry out the project ahead of construction on the academic institute’s new science facility, enabling a recent open day to run with minimal disruption.

The intuitive application meant that prospective students were able to experience how the new facility will look once construction is completed. The project, which utilised the unique Seeable app and a games controller, allowed users to easily manoeuvre though data projections and explore the new science facility from BIM data.

A sister company of chartered geomatics specialist Severn Partnership, Seeable enables non-technical access to BIM data, hosting it in a games engine powered app and augmenting it with information, images and interactive features to communicate in an intuitive manner. For Wolverhampton University, this enabled prospective students to explore first hand the building layout and design of the new science facility from original scanned information.

Visitors, students and staff were able to see what the science facility will look like

The latest project carried out by Seeable also holds future potential for attracting prospective overseas students, unable to attend open days due to transport logistics. By utilising this technology, educational establishments can hold interactive open days with overseas students, allowing them to explore an entire campus through via the internet.

Virtual reality is growing in popularity and fast becoming a useful tool among marketing teams as a way to showcase construction projects in a safe manner, away from actual construction sites, which come with a number of dangers and safety issues

Of the recent Wolverhampton University virtual reality project, Dr Nigel Moore, partner at Seeable, said: “When Wolverhampton University told us they wanted to be able to showcase their new facility at their open day but work was not yet complete, we immediately identified the potential to utilise Seeable and display original building information through Virtual Reality.

“Not only did it enable the university to display its new facility ahead of construction, this technology can also be really useful to marketing teams to aid stakeholder engagement in a building project. Virtual Reality through Seeable can help marketing teams deliver presentations away from the danger of building sites and give an accurate view of a building’s completed infrastructure. The possibilities for this, particularly in the education sector are huge and we are working to develop this service even further.”