Using Immersive Environments to Evaluate Multi-sensory Responsive Surfaces

Jun 14, 2017

This research identifies purposeful uses for multi-sensory responsive surfaces.

The goal is to study the effects on how human behavior positively changes as a result of multi-sensory responsive surfaces. These responsive surfaces seek to reduce fatigue and distraction in both office environments – daylighting, as well as educational multi-use spaces – noise. For interior performance and comfort in office environments, the responsive surface optimizes interior lighting levels by constant actuation. Each individual module is set with parameters controlling a mechanical curl ratio mandated by true material allowance uncovered through performative weather data and real-time lighting metrics. For educational multi-use spaces, the responsive surface optimizes interior environments by adapting to the changing reverberation rhythms of voices and footsteps. It can also be parametrically calibrated to a desired acoustic setting, which allows for increasing or decreasing acoustic dampening depending on the needs of the interior space and its occupants.

Additionally, this research is testing the capabilities of an augmented reality design tool, for real-time, immersive data visualization experiences within a virtual space. Through an immersive digital environment, the researchers are able to view a digital prototype in a space at full size. The information visualized and collected assists in the design refinement of the digital prototype. The virtual environment provides a strategic understanding of how the responsive surface responds to multi-sensory input (proximity, light, and sound), as well as how it performs in various spaces.

keywords: responsive surfaces, multi-sensory, material performance, digital fabrication, immersive environments

Matthew Wagner (Virginia Tech)
Ivica Ico Bukvic (Virginia Tech)
Dane Webster (Virginia Tech)
Presented at: 
ARCC 2017 Conference – Architecture of Complexity (Salt Lake City, UT)
Published & professionally reviewed by: 
Architectural Research Centers Consortium (ARCC)
University of Utah

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