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AMS/IIPS, January 11-15, 1999, Dallas, TX. Web-based Interaction with 3D Environmental Data Sets using Virtual Reality Modeling Language. Nancy Soreide, NOAA/PMEL Christopher Moore, NOAA/JISAO Cathy Lascara, Old Dominion University Glen Wheless, Old Dominion University.

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web based interaction with 3d environmental data sets using virtual reality modeling language

AMS/IIPS, January 11-15, 1999, Dallas, TX

Web-based Interaction with 3D Environmental Data Sets using Virtual Reality Modeling Language

Nancy Soreide, NOAA/PMEL

Christopher Moore, NOAA/JISAO

Cathy Lascara, Old Dominion University

Glen Wheless, Old Dominion University

Sponsored by NOAA’s HPCC program

background
Background
  • Computational power is increasing
  • Observational systems sample the environment more densely
  • Environmental data and model outputs have become increasingly large
  • Newly emerging Virtual Reality technologies allow us to view, analyze and interact with data in new ways
virtual reality modeling language vrml
Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML)
  • VRML is a file format which allows users to access, navigate, explore and interact with environmental data in 3D on the Web
  • VRML is scalable across platforms ranging from PCs to high-end workstations
  • Viewers or plug-ins are freely available for popular Web browsers, such as Netscape

FOR MORE INFO...

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/vrml

vrml objects and worlds
VRML Objects and Worlds
  • VRML objects mimic the real environment
    • Examples: Contour slices, color-coded poly-filled contours, surfaces, vectors, bathymetry, topography
    • VRML Objects can be touched, rotated, animated
      • Users interact with the objects
  • A VRML World consists of VRML objects
    • Created by:
      • Inserting the VRML graphical objects into a Virtual World
      • Specifying user interactions with the Virtual World
project objective
Project Objective
  • Create Web-based interface that supports interactive visualization of oceanographic data
  • Construct Virtual Worlds with oceanographic data
  • Initial focus on data from NOAA’s El Niño/La Niña monitoring buoys in the Tropical Pacific
  • Other datasets included as time and resources allow

FOR MORE INFO...

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/visualization

3d el ni o la ni a vrml world
3D El Niño/La Niña VRML World
    • Surface winds, Sea Surface Temperature, temperatures beneath the sea surface, dynamic topography, depth of the 20 C isotherm
  • Surfaces or objects can be selected for display
  • Visualization can be zoomed, rotated, animated
  • 3D visualization of near-realtime data from El Niño/La Niña monitoring buoys in the tropical Pacific Ocean

FOR MORE INFO...

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/vrml

3d fisheries oceanography model outputs
3D Fisheries-Oceanography Model Outputs
  • Model bathymetry with sea surface height and temperature for May 15, 1997
  • Top surface is the sea surface height (without tides) colored by temperature at 10m depth - blue is cold, red is hot
  • Surface representing sea floor is colored by depth - red is shallow, blue is deeper
    • Spiky protrusions out of the sea surface are the Aleutian Island chain to the South (right), the Pribolof Islands to the North (left).
  • 3D Virtual Ocean from a biological-physical oceanography regional model of the Southeast Bering Sea

From a viewpoint in the Bering Sea, looking towards the East

FOR MORE INFO...

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/vrml

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/vrml/sebscc/start_sebscc.html

how vrml benefits the user
How VRML benefits the user
  • Scientists and researchers
    • VRML lets the scientist touch the data, move into it, and see it from different viewpoints
      • Scientists affirm that use of VRML discloses features of their data and model outputs which were undiscovered with standard visualization techniques.
    • With VRML, a scientist can share these insights with colleagues
  • Widens audience for scientific data and information
    • Government administrators and decision makers
    • Educators and students
    • General public
what you will find at our web site
What you will find at our Web site
  • VRML objects and one or more Virtual Worlds created from TAO El Niño/La Niña data
  • VRML objects and/or Virtual Worlds from other NOAA/PMEL datasets
  • Web pages providing the methodology and technology used in creating VRML objects (e.g., toolkits available on-line)
  • White Paper documenting Lessons Learned in the creation of Virtual Worlds
  • Links to professional society meeting presentations of results

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/vrml

conclusions future directions
Conclusions & Future Directions
  • Virtual Reality helps the scientist and the lay person understand complex datasets and relationships
  • Web based Virtual Reality is widely accessible
  • Web based Virtual Reality can be shared
    • Including interactions between multiple users across networks
    • People sharing virtual worlds can see, talk, and interact with one another
      • e.g., multi-user VRML interaction
  • Faster network speeds will be achieved with Next Generation Internet (NGI), etc.

http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/vrml

Supported by NOAA/HPCC