Multimodal astronaut virtual training prototype

Jukka Rönkkö, Jussi Markkanen (Corresponding Author), Raimo Launonen, Marinella Ferrino, Enrico Gaia, Valter Basso, Harshada Patel, Mirabelle D'Cruz, Seppo Laukkanen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    27 Citations (Scopus)


    A few dedicated training simulator applications exist that mix realistic interaction devices—like real cockpits in flight simulators—with virtual environment (VE) components. Dedicated virtual reality (VR) systems have been utilized also in astronaut training. However there are no detailed descriptions of projection wall VR systems and related interaction techniques for astronaut assembly training in zero gravity conditions. Back projection technology tends to have certain advantages over head mounted displays including less simulation sickness and less restricted user movement. A prototype was built to evaluate the usefulness of projection technology VEs and interaction techniques for astronaut training. This was achieved by first constructing a PC cluster-based general purpose VE software and hardware platform. This platform was used to implement a testing prototype for astronaut assembly sequence training. An interaction tool battery was designed for the purposes of viewpoint control and object handling. A selected training task was implemented as a case study for further analysis based on laptop usage in the Fluid Science Laboratory (FSL) inside the Columbus module in the International Space Station (ISS). User tests were conducted on the usability of the prototype for the intended training purpose. The results seem to indicate that projection technology-based VE systems and suitably selected interaction techniques can be successfully utilized in zero gravity training operations.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)182-191
    Number of pages10
    JournalInternational Journal of Human-Computer Studies
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2006
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • virtual environments
    • VE
    • virtual reality
    • VR
    • astronaut training


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