Advanced simulation, visualization, and interactive devices can be powerful technologies used to enhance education and training in effective and intuitive learning environments.


Overhead view of the 3D hospital and simulation.

Active Threat Emergency Response Visualization

St. Margaret Health wished to create a series of 3d video segments to focus on important elements of an active threat situation. Video segments are intended to be mixed in with a presentation that will include an already existing live-action video sequence showing an active threat incident in the hospital. The 3d video segments are ...

Picture of the AIST Steel Wheel

AIST Steel Wheel

The Association for Iron & Steel Technology (AIST) and CIVS have created a 3D visualization of an interactive version of the Making, Shaping, and Treating of Steel Wheel. The Steel Wheel is a graphical representation of the processes required to convert raw materials into finished steel products. The 3D visualizations on the wheel include detailed ...

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Blast Furnace – Interactive 3D Virtual Training System

Virtual training provides the utility of expanding the understanding of a system through simulation and visualization of aspects that cannot be viewed physically. Utilizing the Unity engine, this project involves the creation of a virtual training environment that is based on a real blast furnace from U. S. Steel as the base case. ...

Surface rendered deskull brain with color coded segmented regions

Brain Visualization

Magnetic resonance diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and functional MRI (fMRI) are two active research areas in neuroimaging. DTI is sensitive to the anisotropic diffusion of water exerted by its macromolecular environment and has been shown useful in characterizing structures of ordered tissues such as the brain white matter, myocardium, and cartilage. Functional MRI measures brain ...

3D visualization of a structure made of cans to look like the logo of superhero Green Lantern.


To fight hunger within the local region, United Way created an educational experience where students build structures purely out of canned food. Previously, students would start with sketch paper and colored pencils to create a drawing for the structure. This drawing would be given to CIVS to create a 3D model to show how the ...

Chemistry Visualization

Chemistry 3-D Visualization

Two immersive 3-D chemistry applications used to augment chemistry & chemical engineering labs. The objective is to provide a 3-dimensional environment for students to interact with chemistry software. Faculty Collaborator: Libbie Pelter, Chemistry and Physics

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Crane Training Simulator Development

Overhead crane operation is an important part of the steel industry. The cranes are used for moving large amounts of scrap steel, ladles of molten metal, and other heavy items in steel facilities. There is little opportunity for training and practice without using the real equipment, where mistakes can be dangerous and costly.

Light Stages

Descartes’ Meditations

This project presents the structure of Renee Descartes’ thinking in the Meditations in the form of a video game that takes students through a maze. The goal is to stay on the path of Descartes’ argument without wandering off down the paths of either empiricism or scholasticism. The game has 20 “gates” or choice points ...


Digital Humanities – Appealia

Digital Humanities utilizes new digital technologies to adapt traditional humanities topics to the modern world. For example, English Educators across the country have identified a need to redefine what it means to be literate for this generation. Serious games provide a potential method to address this issue. A “serious game” is commonly defined as any ...

Another image from the simulation showing business people sitting at a table in conference room.

Digital Humanities: Simulation for Global Leadership

Global Leadership has become a flourishing topic in the behavioral sciences and in the business environment in modern times. With a globalized society and the use of international transactions becoming a routine for large companies, the need for leaders that know how to influence and inspire different people from different cultures has become indispensable. Virtual ...

A virtual instructor guides students through the classroom exercise

Distributive Justice – Education

Distributive justice (the allocation of societal benefits and burdens) is an important concept in philosophy and the social sciences. There are many possible principles of distribution (seven are considered here); the challenge is to determine which principle is most fair. An important approach to settling this question was proposed by John Rawls in his influential ...

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Distributive Justice – Nuclear

Distributive justice (the allocation of societal benefits and burdens) is an important concept in philosophy and the social sciences. There are many possible principles of distribution (six are considered here); the challenge is to determine which principle is most fair. An important approach to settling this question was proposed by John Rawls in his influential ...


Flood Modeling 3D Lab for Civil Engineering

Flooding can lead to significant damage and loss of life. Flood planning is critical to mitigating losses in the event of disasters. In most civil engineering programs that teach about flood planning, it is not economically viable to develop a physical laboratory setup to simulate flood scenarios. A simulated flood based on a 2008 flood ...

Satellite image of the Earth with the title "Cultural Immersion" and a login button superimposed.

German Culture Simulator

For university students, traveling abroad through study or other programs provides the most immersive experience within a culture, but students may lack sufficient funds or the supplementary time in their studies to pursue this invaluable opportunity.

Virtual Groundwater isometric view

Groundwater Simulation for Virtual Education

Groundwater, as the major contributor to the fresh water resource, has been contaminated by agricultural and industrial activities in recent years. However, it is extremely difficult to obtain data to assess the current pollution situation or to predict contaminates’ movement trend. The problem also renders challenges in education. Civil Engineering Students are easy to get ...

mission ocean simulation

Mission Ocean

Fifteen-year-old students in the United States ranked 25th of 34 countries on the OECD international math test and 17th on the science test, raising serious concerns that the United States is not prepared to succeed in the global economy. The science and technology fields are exploding with employment possibilities, yet many young people are unprepared ...

Nursing Virtual Training

Nursing Interactive Training Simulator

A new protocol is being implemented at a Northwest Indiana Hospital to identify risk for sepsis. To help train their nurses on how to use the protocol, an interactive virtual training module has been developed collaboratively by students from Purdue Calumet Nursing, and the Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation.

Fig. 1. Twelve questions about Crito and the laws

Plato’s Crito

Plato’s dialogues about the trial and death of Socrates provide important insights into the Ancient Greek foundations of western philosophy. In the Apology, Plato sets out Socrates defense against the charges that he corrupted the youth of Athens and did not believe in the Gods of that city state. Socrates is tried, convicted and sentenced ...

CFD model and 3D VR model of the FGD unit.

Power Plant – 3D Interactive Training Package for Flue Gas Desulphurization (FGD) System

NIPSCO has two new Flue Gas Desulfurization (FGD) systems at its Schahfer Generating Station. The FGD systems are designed to remove SO2 from flue gas generated by the boiler. The flue gas enters the absorber just above the reaction tank liquid level and rises upwards. As it rises, it contacts fine droplets of recycled ...

Isometric view of the boiler

Power Plant – Boiler

Boiler-operations trainees at NIPSCO coal-fired power stations receive comprehensive training in boiler operation procedures and are given 2D, non-scaled representations of the plant’s steam, coal cycle, and limited key components. These 2D representations are limited therefore field observation is needed to complete the training. However, due to the extreme heat and toxic gases, the internals ...

HAST students work on designing models for a virtual representation of Hammond

Project Lead the Way

Project Lead the Way (PLTW) is a national program which provides rigorous and innovative Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education programs used in middle and high schools across the U.S. The Hammond Academy of Science and Technology (HAST) is collaborating with CIVS to teach students advanced simulation and visualization tools to help solve real ...

Visualization of protein strands.

Protein Visualization

GIRK channels (G protein-coupled inwardly-rectifying potassium channel) are a type of protein found in neurons and have many roles in the nervous system, including memory and pain perception. Improper function of this protein has been linked to altered neural signaling and cell death. A better understanding of how these channels function is important to determine ...

Pyxis MedStation 3500

Pyxis MedStation

As automated medication dispensing stations become more prominent in hospitals, errors decrease and patient care increases. However, this requires user training and does not eliminate human error. Exploring new training options using virtual reality can lead to increased efficiency and a further reduction in medication errors.

A student sits in front of her computer which is displaying the 3D objects she created using a 3D modeling software.

READY NWI Career Camp

Many professionals in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) related career fields in Northwest Indiana will be retiring in the near future creating a large employment gap that would jeopardize the region’s economic strength. Ready NWI and the Works Council of Northwest Indiana have created the READY NWI Career Camp in order to raise awareness ...

Screen capture of the High School level

Reality University Simulation

Using the interactive art form of the videogame as an educational tool and a vessel for training has become an integral part of society today. Utilizing the Unity engine, our team was tasked with creating an educational game that would be entertaining for students that had attended previous conferences as well as informative in ...

3D animation scene design of learning retirement planning concepts

Retirement Investment Planning – Finance Educational Visualization and Interactive Tool


People are living longer lives due to improvements in technology, medicine and quality of life. As time goes on, this trend is expected to continue. The government cannot afford the increasing cost of retirement and this need to be taken into account when planning for the future. There are two key ...

Sinter Cooler Geometry

Sinter Cooler Simulation Pre-Processor Software

The sinter cooler is used to reduce the hot sinter produced. The cooling efficiency of the sinter cooler is significant to the sinter quality. In addition, reducing cooling time by optimizing the operation condition can save energy. Advanced in-house simulation code has been previously developed to investigate the cooling processor of the sinter cooler. However, ...


Steel Safety Training

Many jobs in the steel industry take place in a hazardous environment. The possibility of workplace accidents causing severe injuries or fatalities is very real and ever present. 3D technique is an appropriate method that presents all the situations to workers intuitively, thus providing them with a better understanding about the accidents and instructions to ...

Top view of the SiO2-CaO-FeO Liquidus surface steel making

Ternary Phase Diagram

A phase diagram is a type of chart used to mark conditions where multiple phases can coexist at equilibrium. Most metallurgy and materials science curricula teach basic thermodynamics courses and cover phase diagrams beginning in either the sophomore or junior year. Often times, student comprehension of phase diagrams is good for binary systems, but not ...

planck satellite

The Planck Mission

Planck is an international satellite mission led by the European Space Agency with significant contribution by NASA, designed to measure the anisotropy of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB). The Planck Mission’s Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) stated goals are to: Strengthen science and technology education in the US, raise public awareness about the value of ...

Virtual backhoe from virtual construction project.

Virtual Construction

Virtual Construction of a Single-Family Wood Framed House. The simulation affords Constructions Science students to observe the process of building a house from a vacant site through the wood framing necessary to build the shell and interior partitions of a house. The virtual depiction of the construction gives the students a visual understanding of how ...


Virtual Poetry

“Correspondences” by Baudelaire (1821-1867) is one of the most influential and beautiful poems in French literature. The poem established two different relationships of distinct natures: 1) the relationship among our human senses and the relationship between the physical and spiritual worlds, and 2) how these distinct relationships also correspond and intensify one another. It can ...


Wind Energy – Mixed Reality Simulators for Wind Energy Education

The issue of transferring learned concepts to practical applications is a widespread problem in postsecondary education. Related to this issue is a critical demand to educate and train a generation of professionals for the wind energy industry. With initiatives such as the U.S. Department of Energy’s “20% Wind Energy by 2030” outlining an exponential increase ...

Wind Turbine Component

Wind Turbine Simulators – Tutorial Software

A wind turbine is a device that converts kinetic energy from the wind into mechanical energy. Understanding the wind turbine organization and the energy transformation has long been challenging for many engineering students. As a new approach in teaching wind energy, an interactive computer program was developed to provide students with hands-on experience in visualizing ...

Study of twist angle along the length of the blade and velocity contours at different angles of attack.

Wind Turbine Simulators – Wind Turbine Design

A wind turbine is a device that converts kinetic energy from the wind into mechanical energy. Understanding the wind turbine organization and the energy transformation has long been challenging for many engineering students. As a new approach in teaching wind energy, an interactive computer program was developed to provide students with hands-on experience in visualizing ...