Auralization systems for simulation of augmented reality experiences in virtual environments
Augmented reality has the potential to connect people anywhere, anytime, and provide them with interactive virtual objects that enhance their lives. To deliver contextually appropriate audio for these experiences, a much greater understanding of how users will interact with augmented content and each other is needed. This contribution presents a system for evaluating human behavior and augmented reality device performance in calibrated synthesized environments. The system consists of a spherical loudspeaker array capable of spatial audio reproduction in a noise isolated and acoustically dampened room. The space is equipped with motion capture systems that track listener position, orientation, and eye gaze direction in temporal synchrony with audio playback and capture to allow for interactive control over the acoustic environment. In addition to spatial audio content from the loudspeaker array, supplementary virtual objects can be presented to listeners using motion-tracked unoccluding headphones. The system facilitates a wide array of studies relating to augmented reality research including communication ecology, spatial hearing, room acoustics, and device performance. System applications and configuration, calibration, processing, and validation routines are presented.