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Thursday, August 6 • 16:30 - 17:00
Requirements Analysis on a Virtual Reality Training System for CBRN Crisis Preparedness

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Effective training is a cornerstone of crisis and disaster preparedness. Quality, consistency and frequency of training are shown to impact self-perceived disaster readiness of first responder units. However, barriers such as time, cost and safety limit the extent to which large groups of responders can be brought up to established standards, particularly related to integrated disaster team response skills and experience. This is particularly evident during events involving large-scale mobilization of population-based healthcare and public health resources where skills learned through training impact directly the actual response. The advent of technologically-based approaches through Virtual Reality (VR) environments holds significant promise in its ability to bridge the gaps of other established training formats. VR integrates real-time computer graphics, body-tracking devices, visual displays and other sensory inputs to immerse individuals in computer-generated virtual environments. VR creates an illusion in the user of being physically inside the virtual world, and this sense of presence can have positive effects on task performance, enabling the learning situation to be experienced as a real context, which in turn promotes experiential learning. Indeed, VR enables individuals to learn by doing, through first-person experiences. Over the past decade, VR-based training in crisis preparedness has been increasingly recognized as an important adjunct to traditional modalities of real-life drills. Multiple studies, have highlighted VR applications in crisis and disaster training. Many government agencies have adopted until now VR-based training. However, existing solutions mostly offer desktop-based VR training that lacks visual 3D immersion and navigation by natural walking. Both factors decline the sense of presence. Furthermore, natural walking is essential to simulate stress and physical excitement, which is of particular interest to create a realistic training for on-site squad leaders and rescue teams. There are only a few existing solutions that provide immersive VR training through stereoscopic 3D scene viewing and body motion analysis. However, these systems are solely designed for military training, are very expensive and require extensive technical knowledge for system setup. These factors heavily diminish their applicability for crisis training of first responder agencies since they require a flexible immersive VR system to enable multi-user, interdisciplinary team training at different command levels in various training scenarios. As the first step towards a flexible multi-user VR training system, we performed two thorough analyses. The first is a comprehensive state of the art analysis that outlines the capabilities of existing VR systems for single and multi-user training. The second is a requirement analysis of two peer stakeholder - the Austrian Federal Ministry of Defense and Sports (BMLVS) and the Red Cross Innsbruck, Austria - with a focus on CBRN training tasks. Three uses cases are developed that describe training scenarios that would be highly beneficial to be trained with a VR system. Subsequently, we discussed both analyses and draw conclusions if – and to which extent – current technology satisfy the essential stakeholder requirements. Finally, we outlined future research steps. 


Presenter / Artist
AP

Assoc. Prof. Hannes Kaufmann

Associate Professor, TU Wien
ISSS One Day


Thursday August 6, 2015 16:30 - 17:00 CEST
Copenhagen 1 Scandic Berlin Potsdamer Platz, Gabriele-Tergit-Promenade 19, 10963 Berlin, Germany

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