The Smell Engine: A system for artificial odor synthesis in virtual environments

Alireza Bahremand, Mason Manetta, Jessica Lai, Byron Lahey, Christy Spackman, Brian Smith, Richard C. Gerkin, Robert Likamwa

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Mimicking physical odor sensations virtually can present users with a real-time odor synthesis that approximates what users would smell in a virtual environment, e.g., as they walk around in virtual reality. To this end, we devise a Smell Engine that includes: (i) a Smell Composer framework that allows developers to configure odor sources in virtual space, (ii) a Smell Mixer that dynamically estimates the odor mix that the user would smell, based on diffusion models and relative odor source distances, and (iii) a Smell Controller that coordinates an olfactometer to physically present an approximation of the odor mix to the user's mask from a set of odorants channeled through controllable flow valves. Through a three-part user study, we found that the Smell Engine can help measure a subject's olfactory detection threshold and improve their ability to precisely localize odors in the virtual environment, as compared to existing trigger-based solutions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - 2022 IEEE Conference on Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces, VR 2022
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages241-249
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9781665496179
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022
Event29th IEEE Conference on Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces, VR 2022 - Virtual, Online, New Zealand
Duration: Mar 12 2022Mar 16 2022

Publication series

NameProceedings - 2022 IEEE Conference on Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces, VR 2022

Conference

Conference29th IEEE Conference on Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces, VR 2022
Country/TerritoryNew Zealand
CityVirtual, Online
Period3/12/223/16/22

Keywords

  • Computer systems organization
  • Human-centered computing
  • Interactive systems and tools
  • Sensors and actuators

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Media Technology
  • Modeling and Simulation

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Smell Engine: A system for artificial odor synthesis in virtual environments'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this