3D cave brings virtual reality to offshore renewable training

3D oculus rift

The 3D cave prepares engineers for working in hazardous scenarios, such as working at the top of a 150m offshore wind turbine, or simulate the journey to an offshore platform via specialist vessel. This provides engineers working or training in the renewable energy industry the chance to experience hostile, dangerous and complex conditions, prior to leaving the shore.

Located in the Hull Immersive Visualization Environment (HIVE) in the Department of Computer Science, the cave is part of an investment in renewables led by CASS, the University’s business facing renewable energy and low-carbon hub.

As well as using a 3D cave, the project simulates (using a head mounted display) the winching experience to and from a turbine by helicopter.

A continuous process of ongoing communication with industry partners, potential users and other stakeholders is underway, and it is this bold sector engagement that is going to determine the direction of future products.

HIVE was awarded £240,000 in funding from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) to develop the two-year renewable energy project.

The aim is to offer a service to industry and wind farm engineers in training in order to support the continuing professional development of those that work in the sector.

The department’s research team carrying out the installation work comprises Mike Bielby, James Ward, Dr Kevin Elner, Dr Jan Springer, Dr Helen Wright and Warren Viant.

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