What began as an undergraduate project last spring with Brandon Cole, Chris Carey—both software engineering majors—and Jake Noel-Storr, assistant research professor and director of the Insight Lab in the Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Science, evolved into a presentation at the second national USA Science and Engineering Festival April 28–29 in Washington, D.C., sponsored by Lockheed Martin.
The presentation will consist of a portable planeterrainium system that projects 3-D images—featuring surfaces of planets and moons—on the floor in front of the viewer’s feet. The projection system has been upgraded multiple times to become more interactive and user-friendly by interacting with the Google Earth platform for the ability to “fly” over the surface of different planets.
The project is a collaboration among five undergraduate students from RIT, Noel-Storr and high school students from Rush-Henrietta High School. The high school participants have been assisting the project with help from an education supplement to a NASA grant awarded to the RIT Center for Detectors. Their role is to develop images for the product and test the interactivity.
“Our goal is to have a low-cost portable device that is easy for large groups of people to use,” says Noel-Storr. “The 3-D planeterrainium projection system is a step in that direction and the Science and Engineering Festival allows us to work with large groups of people.”
The RIT and Rochester communities will be able to experience the 3-D planeterrainum at Imagine RIT: Innovation and Creativity Festival on May 5 in the Gordon Field House and Activities Center.