Disaster Scope: The Augmented Reality Floods and Smoke Simulated Experience Smartphone-Application

15-17 May 09:00 - 18:00
Booth: 15, Expo Center Foyer (1st Floor)
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Aichi University of Technology
Tomoki Itamiya (itamiya@g.aut.ac.jp)
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Natural disasters occur frequently also in Japan. In great east Japan earthquake in 2011 and the heavy rain disaster at western Japan in 2018, many people didn’t have the crisis consciousness enough to evacuate quickly and safely. We developed the augmented reality smartphone-application Disaster Scope that provides the special immersive experience to improve crisis awareness of disaster in peacetime. The application can superimpose a virtual disaster occurrence situation such as computer graphics(CG) floods and debris and fire smoke in actual scenery, using only a smartphone and low-cost paper goggles.

By using a smartphone equipped with a 3D depth sensor, it is possible to sense the height from the ground and recognize surrounding objects. The real-time occlusion processing was enabled using only by a smartphone, therefore in the tsunami and floods situation experience application, the water surface is not displayed behind the actual objects and above the set water height. It can also express the flooding stream and the drifting thing(debris) accompanying it. And the collision detection of the real world’s objects and CG debris is also possible. Flow speed can be changed by button tap. Rainfall expression is also possible. As a result, it has become possible to understand more realistically the danger of floods. In the fire smoke situation experience application, a situation occurs where the fire occurs and the smoke fills the room indoors.

When wearing paper goggles and launching this application, the CG smoke is displayed superimposed on the image of the real-time scenery. Since the height position of the smartphone from the floor can be precisely sensed from a 3D depth sensor information, in the state of standing up, the smoke is very dense and the surrounding visibility is very poor. But when taking a crouching low posture, even in the state that smoke becomes thinner and the real scenery becomes easier to see. Therefore, the user can feel the situation that there is little smoke near the floor. Users can fully understand the necessity to escape in a low posture to avoid smoke when a fire situation. There are no other applications like this in the world, it is very unique and special. We utilized this system in evacuation drills organized by elementary schools and municipalities. As a result of the survey and verification, it is very useful for improving crisis awareness of students and citizens.