VR/AR in Space: The Next Space Revolution?


Tags: Planetary Exploration, Virtual Reality

Time: Thursday, Jul 19, 2018 -

Location: SRI International, 333 Ravenswood Ave, Menlo Park, CA 94025

What is the potential of Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR/AR) technology in Space? Could VR technology plays a role in our ambition to reach the stars. Could we use this new tool to explore and understand our solar system? Will it help to harvest the almost infinite amount of energy and material available in space? Together with VR/AR specialists, Space entrepreneurs, as well as scientific institutions like the SETI Institute, we will discuss the role of VR/AR, emphasizing how this new technology can be used by scientists, engineers, and educators to build, share and describe future innovative space projects as well as share with the public the excitement of exploring our universe.

  • Timoni West is a director of XR Research in Unity Labs, managing a team of cross-disciplinary artists and engineers. Her group explores how humans can create and live in worlds in virtual & augmented reality. She will describe how the VR/AR tools are now available to everybody giving the opportunity to talented artists and engineers to build their own applications for space exploration.
  • Amaresh Kollipara is an Emmy-nominated VR producer and space industry executive with a multidisciplinary background. He recently led a project called Mission:ISS at Facebook's VR company Oculus. This project was conducted in collaboration with NASA and is a true-to-life simulation of the International Space Station in VR. Amaresh will also discuss new VR use cases being developed by NASA, ESA, and other agencies. He’ll discuss how several agencies and companies are using VR and AR technologies to visualize large amounts of data and communicate space themes with the general public.
  • Franck Marchis, a senior planetary astronomer at the SETI Institute and Chief Scientific Officer at Unistellar. Franck is also a scientific advisor for VR2Planets, a company which specialized in creating accurate environments from space-based and drone/rover data to help scientists explore and understand planets and other bodies in our solar system. A multi-user demo which immerses the users on the surface of Mars made from the Curiosity rover data combined with the space-satellite data will be featured at the event. Franck will discuss his thoughts on the potential of VR for scientific investigations at large.
  • J.R. Skok is a planetary scientist with the SETI Institute. His research is focused on exploring the deep history of Mars and the Earth and the active exploration for astrobiology. He is the scientific advisor for AstroReality, a company that developed topographically precise planetary models that are paired with AR technology for education and science outreach. J.R. will demonstrate the power of combining the limitless potential of AR with tangible handheld artifacts to understand Space like never before.