The world and our surrounding consist of countless processes, that cannot be seen or understood since they are simply not observable. Modern research sheds light into the dark and studies the secrets of life. How can these secrets be experienced?
We answered this question, asked by DESY (Deutsches Elektronen-Synchotron) and the Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung with ErUM, a VR experience for Oculus Quest. By taking users directly into the world of science, they can discover different research areas in a playful, immersive and informative way.
Projektträger DESY, Initiative vom Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung
The story of ErUM
Scientists from all over the world work constantly to understand how everything is connected and try to discover the secrets of life. What are the smallest pieces of the world that keep everything together? What are the characteristics of matter and how did the universe evolve after the big bang? Answering these questions requires the latest state of art in technology: from enormous particle accelerators built underground to a variety of telescopes to observe the infinite universe or floor-spanning detectors to make invisible processes visible. Users can experience those technologies at first hand in three immersive scenarios:
In the first scenario, the user is flying at nearly speed of light as part of a proton swarm through a particle accelerator. He can observe and analyze the collision of two particles at first hand and afterwards discover how big those particle detectors really are and what scientific research they are used for. Afterwards he can discover the detector hall with the help of a lifting platform, that can be controlled with a panel.
Being shrunk to a microscopic level, users can discover the inside of a human cell. By means of an x-ray laser the user can study how atomic processes and structures of molecules work and interact with the molecule itself. Afterwards a linear accelerator in an underground tunnel can be visited, to find out where X-ray flashes are produced in reality and how they are used to map and film atomic details of chemical reactions.
In the third scenario, the user finds himself in space. After exploring the Milky Way, he can witness the formation of one of our neighbor planets in fast motion. To learn how those observations can be made he travels back to earth, to the Atacama Desert, where one of the biggest telescopes of the world is located. By „looking through the eye of the telescope“, the user can experience how precise distant planets and objects can be represented with such modern technology. He also gets an insight into different types of telescopes (radiowaves or gamma/microwave radiation) and their different representations of the night sky.