The Wide Angle Virtual Environment (WAVE) further pushes the envelop of BIG-VR, exploring techniques that enable the creation of ultra-high resolution, immersive, walk-in, virtual environments for collaborative research, development, data analytics and scientific story telling at large. The WAVE geometry approximates a half-cylinder lying on its side, allowing users to freely move along its center on a raised platform. It utilizes 35, ultra-narrow bezel, passive stereo, high-definition display tiles in a 5×7 layout to approximate the half-cylinder (cresting-wave) geometry, providing up to 160 degrees horizontal and 180 degrees vertical (toes-to-sky) field of view. Its offers a total resolution of 9,600 x 7,560 pixels (72,576,000 pixels), or approximately 36 megapixel per eye.
The WAVE is powered by 18 display nodes with dual graphics cards and 40 Gbps network interconnects, and controlled via an additional head node. A light-based tracking system is used for head, wand and gamepad tracking for intuitive interaction.
WAVE uses our WAVEnet experimental network, providing over a terabit worth of network bandwidth within the WAVElab and connects to the campus research network and beyond at up to 80 Gbps. WAVE is the first operational BIG-VR system tapping the potential of the Pacific Research Platform (PRP) – a new National Science Foundation project that uses fiber-optic networks to connect researchers at universities throughout the West Coast, enabling them to share “big data” at an unprecedented speed.
The WAVE hardware design as well as its open-source software stacks, called CGLX and CalVR, were entirely developed in-house.