Virtual Reality and Scientific Visualisation

Virtual reality is being increasingly used in the field of scientific visualisation. This field is based upon using computer graphics to express complex ideas and scientific concepts, for example molecular models or statistical results.

A tool for conveying complex information

Scientific visualisation is used as a means of communicating abstract concepts to an audience which also aids with understanding. The audience can interact with these images, for example, viewing a molecular structure at different angles or as a means of problem solving.

Virtual reality enables scientists to demonstrate a method or convey complex ideas in a visual format. This includessemi-immersive and full immersive environments in which they visualise research theories or discuss large data sets.

Used across the sciences

This is used in the following scientific disciplines:

  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Medicine
  • Astronomy
  • Engineering

This technology raises possibilities for collaboration between different disciplines or new forms of research and development.

Virtual reality is considered alongside other forms of visualisation technology such as computer simulation, animation and information visualisation. All of these are designed to show a visual model of a live system, e.g. human body, complex data set or a large collection of numerical information.

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