Mixing Virtual Reality and 2D Visualization

Example for combination of virtual reality with 2D visualization to show additional data.

3D stereoscopic visualization and virtual reality techniques are increasingly used for quality control, analysis and discussion of 3D geoscientific data in the oil and gas industry. They provide an excellent and easily comprehensible insight into complex 3D structures of the earth's subsurface. However, in many research topics in environmental and geosciences the analysis of data usually also involves data that might be better viewed in 2D. Examples are maps or histograms. The use of virtual environments as visual information systems for the efficient communication and discussion of complex multi-attribute data sets also requires 2D data to be visualized with a high quality. Further it is often not possible to show all the relevant information simultaneously and so an interactive virtual environment is required that provides an overview and the necessary interaction techniques to select additional information, e.g. from a database, to be visualized on request. This article describes the hardware setup installed at the UFZ Centre for Environmental Research and a software solution for how to use this setup efficiently to connect 2D data representations with 3D visualization and interaction.

Zehner, B. 2010: MIXING VIRTUAL REALITY AND 2D VISUALIZATION - Using Virtual Environments as Visual 3D Information Systems for Discussion of Data from Geo- and Environmental Sciences, Conference Proceedings of theInternational Conference on Computer Graphics and Applications (GRAPP2010), Angers, France, May 2010.