Between the 13-14 November 2018, I gave a presentation entitled "Underwater Virtual Reality Excavation" at the Visual Heritage Expo 2018 in Vienna, Austria. Members of the HCI Lab delivered a live demonstration and many participants tried it out. The demo presented an implementation of an immersive virtual environment for underwater archaeology in the form of a serious game. The main focus is on expanding the player’s knowledge, by teaching them about maritime archaeology and performing two archaeological procedures - tagging and dredging.
The dredging procedure was accomplished by implementing and extending an existing voxel-based sand simulation approach and rasterizing it using the marching cubes algorithm on the GPU. The extension of the simulation consisted in adding a custom dredging simulation step that removes the sand from the grid. Also, an alternative approach for sand slippage using a custom heuristic exists. The game is developed for the HTC Vive head-mounted display and uses room-scale experience, allowing the user to move freely in the virtual environment.