Investigating Virtual Reality's Capability in the Future of Nuclear Reactor Training
CURE: Engineering Directed Independent Research: ENGINEERING RESEARCH
Karina LaRubbio, Max LoGalbo
Dr. Eakta Jain
Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering
In this study, we developed a virtual environment for individuals to train and learn how to safely power up a nuclear reactor. A nuclear reactor is an unsafe environment for an employee without necessary specialized training. Given 360-degree photos and step-by-step instructions of how a reactor could be powered up, we modeled a virtual environment in which a user can look around an image and recognize the different steps associated with powering the reactor. At the start, the user is able to focus their gaze on each individual step, needing to look at a specific sequence of steps in order to complete the procedure and safely power the reactor. Each step is highlighted green once completed by the user and the next step in the sequence is provided. By creating this environment, the risk involved in potential accidents in training is lowered, with increased accessibility. The virtual environment can also be applied for skill assessment by removing the prompts that guide users and instead tracking how well they perform on their own. In future work, the environment can be automated to accommodate more procedures, with possible interactivity features to emphasize progress.
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