Technology has taken a big leap in the past two decades and now it has entered in to a completely new world called The Virtual Reality where the impossible becomes possible. Virtual Reality (VR) can take you to the grassy fields of Scotland while you’re at home. VR can give you the experience of a roller coaster ride while you are sitting on your sofa. All this can be done in the world of Virtual Reality without any physical interventions. Although Virtual Reality was introduced in 20th century, due to limited technology VR was not very popular. With the recent advancements in the technology, VR is now taking over the world by storm. This has led to the advent of many products like the Oculus, Google glass and Samsung Gear VR.
Technically, Virtual reality is a computer technology that replicates an environment, real or imaginary, and simulates a user’s physical presence and environment in a way that allows the user to interact with it. VR is a big step ahead of 3-D modelling that allows you to see things or places around you that don’t really exist but looks so real, it almost (if not actually) makes you feel like you are right there in the action. It is an emerging trend which is now gaining more public attention.
The growing popularity of Virtual Reality Technology had diversified its application. It has been implemented by many Healthcare and Military organizations:
Healthcare and clinical therapies
Healthcare methodology has been greatly affected by VR technology. Many VR devices are being used in clinical therapy, and the results are significant. One of the example is, Anxiety disorder treatment. Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy (VRET) is a form of exposure therapy for treating anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and phobias. It is believed that when VRET is combined with other forms of behavioral therapy, patients experience a reduction of symptoms. In some cases, patients no longer meet the mental disorder criteria for PTSD after a series of treatments with VRET. Also, Immersive VR has been studied for acute pain management, on the theory that it may distract people, reducing their experience of pain and flooding sensories with a positive experience.
Education and training
VR is used to provide learners with a virtual environment where they can develop their skills without the real-world consequences of failing, for example U.S. Navy personnel using a VR parachute training simulator.
United States was one of the first to develop the use of VR for military training. Later the United States military announced the Dismounted Soldier Training System in 2012. It was cited as the first fully immersive military VR training system.
NASA has used VR technology for twenty years. Most notable is their use of immersive VR to train astronauts while they are still on Earth. Such applications of VR simulations include exposure to zero-gravity work environments and training on how to spacewalk. Astronauts can even simulate what it is like to work with tools in space while using low cost 3D printed mock up tools.
Flight and vehicular applications
Flight simulators are a form of VR pilot training. The aim is for the pilot to experience a sense of immersion and to feel as if they are flying a real aircraft with real controls and under real life conditions. They can range from a fully enclosed module to a series of computer monitors providing the pilot’s point of view. U.S. Air Force has been using VR training from a long time. By the same token, virtual driving simulations are used to train tank drivers on the basics before allowing them to operate the real vehicle. As these drivers often have less opportunity for real-world experience, VR training provides additional training time.
Editor’s note: Original Sources