An immersive visualization platform that virtually recreates the experience of living in a wildfire will help artists, designers, firefighters and scientists better understand and communicate the dynamics of these extreme events.
I fire, based at the iCinema Center for Interactive Cinema Research at UNSW Sydney, is a sector-first artificially intelligent (AI) immersive environment that visualizes the unpredictable behavior of wildfires. It gives users and researchers a clear understanding of wildfire dynamics on a 1:1 scale and in real time in a secure virtual environment.
The five-year project is funded by an ARC award-winning fellowship of lead researcher Scientia Professor Denis Del Favreau, director of the EyeCinema Research Center, UNSW Art, Design and Architecture. The philosopher-turned-artist uses artistic imitation to sensitively explore diverse risky scenarios, directly addressing issues like global warming in visceral and compelling ways.
“Forest fires are a whole new generation of fires,” says Prof. Del Favarro. “We are experiencing an accelerating level of global warming that is driving fires of scale, speed and violence never before seen in recorded human history.”
“It uses real-world data to visualize not only what they look like, but also what they feel like.” [and sound] like. Voice is important… [because] Wildfire has a special acoustic that is completely unique.”
The project, like the Centre, is interdisciplinary in approach working in art, design, computing and science. It brings together global experts in fire research, including computer and fire scientists at UNSW such as Professor Maurice Pagnuco and Professor Jason Sharples, Data 61, the University of Melbourne, San Jose State University, and more than 15 international industry and government partners. Australian Fire and Emergency Service Authority Council, Fire Rescue NSW, CalFire, Pau Costa Foundation and ARC Center of Excellence in Climate Extremes.
equipping areas prone to fire
Unlike traditional bushfires, which proceed relatively predictably, wildfires are fundamentally unpredictable. They can create their own weather systems generating lightning storms that can ignite new fires; This, in addition to their size and speed, makes their behavior difficult to predict, Prof. Del Favarro says.
“Situational awareness is important in a wildfire… It’s like being in a war zone. You don’t know where the dangers are. They can surround you and get on top of you,” he says. “Therefore, we are developing a way to visualize this type of dynamic by using artificial intelligence to drive the visualization so that the fire behaves unexpectedly according to its logic, not according to our expectations.”
The platform will provide a single tool for two different users.
For fire scientists, firefighters and fire organizations in Australia and internationally, it will facilitate research and training in the dynamics of wildfire scenarios, thereby opening up for a more agile and collaborative approach to fire planning, group training and fire management The end will be able to decide.
It will enable artists, curators and designers to imaginatively explore wildfire landscapes using a digital palette with a vast range of atmospheres, flora and topography to enhance public participation and understanding of these landscapes.
Users can share and explore the environment across multiple locations and platforms, including mobile 360-degree 3D cinema as well as more portable 3D projection screens, 3D head-mounted displays for laptops and tablets.
Also, to use in fire science and art, I fire The project will develop a geo-specific software application as part of its resource toolkit. The application can be downloaded in fire-sensitive areas for use by fire researchers, first responders and the community.
“Local councils can implement this in their own geographic area to show people how wildfire can go in their community. This will become part of their portfolio of educational tools for fire preparedness,” said Prof. Del Favarro says.
They say the project will also develop a pipeline for sharing and integrating diverse data sets – fire behavior, management procedures and protocols, for example – collected by a range of agencies to facilitate research into wildfires. Done, they say.
“This will set the benchmark for using this data to effectively observe these events.”
AI is a powerful research partner
It is imperative to use artificial intelligence to understand these data sets.
“AI optimizes our ability to perceive the dynamics of fire in landscapes,” Prof. Del Favarro says. “It can help us process this complex data more quickly and in more practical ways than we do” [as humans] What can we do.
“And we really need help at this time because the existence of extreme events like wildfires is beyond our imagination in terms of impact and difficult to model.”
The project will also explore the wildfire landscape through a range of creative applications for film, museums and contemporary arts.
,[AI-driven immersive visualisations] allows you to imagine whole new creative worlds that you otherwise wouldn’t be able to do with just human cognition,” he says.
I fire The platform will be developed for more specific industry needs, potentially commercial in nature. For example, Data 61 UNSW will work with iCinema to create an immersive experience of their fire application, Spark, that spans the bushfire model to help plan and manage bushfires.
Beneficial visual technologies across disciplines
Pro. Del Favarro says these types of advanced art and technology frameworks are applicable to a wide variety of needs.
UNSW iCinema’s research includes interactive art landscapes, intelligent database systems, immersive design modeling and extreme event simulation. Past projects have contributed to contemporary art, cultural heritage, defense monuments, digital museums and mining simulations.
icast The project, for example, delivered a suite of virtual reality simulations to the Shenyang Research Institute of China Technology and Engineering Group, China’s leading research and training institute for mine safety. The project, later commercialized, produced a highly realistic simulation of an underground mine that allowed up to 30 trainees to interact with risk and technology scenarios simultaneously. The immersive module provided a highly effective alternative to training through lengthy manuals, training over 30,000 miners and reducing fatal and serious injury in mining industries in China and Australia.
Pro. Artistic technologies that provide life experiences can help us better understand and address the unpredictable and turbulent landscapes that characterize the terrestrial changes we are experiencing, says Del Favreau.
“I’m very interested in creating virtual worlds to enhance the way I connect with the physical world around me,” he says.
“Creating a simulated world is a way of collaborating with an artificially intelligent twin to create a new type of partnership that combines human situational understanding and decision-making with the subtlety and adaptability of AI to help establish patterns and predict behavior.” integrates speed and scale.”