The Allosphere is a one-of-a-kind scientific display located at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
The AlloSphere space consists of a 3-story cube that is treated with extensive sound absorption material making it one of the largest anechoic chambers in the world. Standing inside this chamber are two 5-meter-radius hemispheres constructed of perforated aluminum that are designed to be optically opaque and acoustically transparent.
There are currently two projectors, soon to be multiple high-resolution video projectors, mounted around the seam between the two hemispheres, approaching eye-limited resolution on the inner surface. The loudspeaker real-time sound synthesis cluster (around 500 individual speaker elements plus sub-woofers) is/will be suspended behind the aluminum screen resulting in 3-D audio. Other clusters include simulation, sensor-array processing, effector-array processing, real-time video processing for motion-capture and visual computing, render-farm/real-time ray-tracing and radiosity cluster, and content and prototyping environments.
Take a look at this demonstration video recently recorded at TED; Professor JoAnn Kuchera-Morin describes the use of the device in scientific research.
Fans of sf movies like the X-MEN may be startled at how similar this is to the device known as Cerebro, a neural interface used by talented X-men.
(Cerebro from the X-Men movie)
Read more about the Allosphere ; thanks to Nicholas Johnson for the tip and the reference for the Allosphere.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 4/25/2009)