Charles River Analytics awarded SBIR grant for VR coaching

March 16, 2023 – Charles River Analytics, a developer of clever methods options, has just lately introduced that it has been awarded a further Small Enterprise Innovation Analysis (SBIR) grant from the Nationwide Institute of Environmental Well being Sciences (NIEHS) to create digital actuality (VR) modules that improve coaching for hazardous waste operations and emergency response (HAZWOPER).

Charles River said that following a profitable Section I and supplemental COVID-19 grant, it has continued to construct VR content material to bridge the hole between classroom studying and area workout routines.

This newest award is geared in direction of creating coaching modules for firefighters, emergency responders, and environmental and industrial employees, who could all encounter hazardous supplies. Publicity to those supplies poses well being and security dangers similar to chemical burns, diseases, fires, and explosions.

Workers who’re required to take HAZWOPER coaching will first attend classroom lectures with slideshow displays after which do area coaching workout routines. If classroom periods aren’t partaking or complete, college students will be ill-prepared for area coaching workout routines, losing precious sources together with coach time and tools, in line with Charles River. Moreover, college students could not retain the data after incomes certification, which may put themselves and others at risk when encountering hazardous environments later.

To reinforce HAZWOPER coaching and make it as partaking and efficient as potential, Charles River is creating an “Immersive Modular Preparedness Clever Tutor” (IMPRINT). The coaching system contains VR modules through which college students can observe the steps to soak up hazardous situations.

Charles River famous that its software program engineers are collaborating with the New England Consortium Well being and Security Coaching Heart by way of the College of Massachusetts Lowell and the Boston Hearth Division to design three-dimensional scenes that match current course content material.

“We’re giving trainers the instruments they should educate individuals find out how to safely do jobs that maintain our society going throughout emergencies,” mentioned Dan Duggan, Software program Engineer, Prolonged Actuality (XR) Improvement Lead at Charles River Analytics, and Co-Principal Investigator on the IMPRINT effort.

The Charles River group proved the idea in earlier SBIR phases and constructed relationships with key companions. In Section II, the corporate’s XR group is constructing immersive tabletop simulations utilizing the Meta Quest 2 VR headset, and is creating narratives, sketching maps, deciding on 3D belongings, and creating recreation mechanics to enhance current course materials and to match HAZWOPER coaching goals. Instance coaching situations embrace a 3D scene through which trainees have to find out what to do after they encounter a puddle with a stay wire.

Trainees can use IMPRINT to use complicated, harmful procedures in a secure, managed digital surroundings. A library of VR case research will exchange customary paper and PowerPoint scenario-based actions, and IMPRINT’s immersive tabletop simulations will assist to raised put together trainees for each their assessments and responses to real-world security hazards.

To be taught extra about Charles River Analytics’ IMPRINT digital actuality coaching answer, please go to the corporate’s website.

Picture credit score: Charles River Analytics

Sam Sprigg

Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in analysis and report writing, he has been masking XR trade information for the previous 5 years.

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