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Scientists want to bring the moon closer with virtual reality

RATE THIS! +47
Posted in Science on 23rd Nov, 2014 09:37 PM by AlexMuller

Google's Lunar Xprize is up for grabs, and researchers at Carnegie Mellon think they have a chance of bagging the $30 million prize (which requires landing a robot on the Moon, moving it 500 meters and sending video back to Earth). The team's solution plans to beam footage from the moon via a telepresence robot.

 

Instead of simply broadcasting shots of the moon's surface, however, the scientists told the BBC they want to go a stage further and "bring the Moon back". How? By pairing the spacefaring robot with Oculus Rift headsets here on Earth; turn your head and the robot on the moon will supposedly turn in tandem via head-tracking. There were a few issues that had to be overcome, however. Namely, the Rift needs a pair of simultaneous video feeds to achieve a convincing virtual reality experience, and, by design it can't accept two streams.

 
The team says that it found solutions for these challenges, plus a few other hurdles (hopefully lag is one of them), after what they described as "a non-stop, day and night hackathon." The researchers are already in talks with SpaceX, and all going well should launch on the private space-firm's Falcon 9 craft sometime in 2016. The team's goals may be lofty, but we can't help admire them nonetheless. Ultimately, CMU wants hundreds of its robots on the moon and a Rift headset in every classroom, allowing practically anyone to see what Apollo 11's crew saw 45 years ago.

Tags: moonGoogleLunar Xprizespacevirtual realityOculus

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-11-23
+2
Could you look up and see the Earth? If so that would be awesome! Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-11-24
+1
What an interesting plan! VR could have many applications and this one -VR experience of the Moon something that is going to be completely new experience for any user and educational as well Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-11-24
+1
VR is great. It is a disruptive technology that will enable people to experience what previously seemed impossible, as well as redefine what it means to be in a “place.”
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-11-24
+0
I agree, VR is going to be so big in the coming years that I believe we will find uses for it in places we didn’t even know we needed it Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-11-24
+1
I also believe VR is going to be one of the most influential and life changing revolutions, joining the likes of the Internet, a transforming invention that literally has changed the way we accomplish everyday tasks for the better. Reply


 

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