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Award Abstract #1229561

MRI: Acquisition of a CAREN Virtual Reality System for Collaborative Research in Assistive and Rehabilitation Technologies

Division Of Computer and Network Systems
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Initial Amendment Date: September 4, 2012
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Latest Amendment Date: September 4, 2012
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Award Number: 1229561
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Award Instrument: Standard Grant
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Program Manager: Rita V. Rodriguez
CNS Division Of Computer and Network Systems
CSE Direct For Computer & Info Scie & Enginr
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Start Date: September 1, 2012
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End Date: August 31, 2016 (Estimated)
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Awarded Amount to Date: $450,000.00
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Investigator(s): Rajiv Dubey dubey@usf.edu (Principal Investigator)
Sudeep Sarkar (Co-Principal Investigator)
David Diamond (Co-Principal Investigator)
Kyle Reed (Co-Principal Investigator)
William Quillen (Co-Principal Investigator)
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Sponsor: University of South Florida
3702 Spectrum Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33612-9446 (813)974-2897
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Program Reference Code(s): 1189
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Program Element Code(s): 1189


Proposal #: 12-29561

PI(s): Dubey, Rajiv; Diamond, David M; Quillen, William; Reed, Kyle; Sarkar, Sudeep

Institution: University of South Florida

Title: MRI/Acq.: CAREN: Virtual Reality System for Collaborative Research in Assistive & Rehabilitation Technologies

Project Proposed:

This project, acquiring an instrument referred to as CAREN (Computer Assisted Rehabilitation ENvironment), aims to greatly facilitate ongoing interdisciplinary and inter- and intra-institutional research to analyze human mobility and function and to improve the quality of life of individuals with disabilities and older adults by increasing their independence and community reintegration. The instrument, a turnkey customizable 3D virtual reality system with applications in complementary research and training experience in the broad areas of rehabilitation engineering and science, also includes a cylindrical screen projection system, 12-camera real-time motion-capture system, a six degree-of-freedom motion base and a control software suite. The team includes about 20 PIs from various departments at the institution, which currently lacks a shared virtual reality simulation facility for large collaborative projects. The instrumentation, to be used for fundamental research in various disciplines, analysis and creation of innovative technology solutions that can be rapidly evaluated, tested, prototyped and commercialized, is expected to dramatically reduce the need for costly physical simulations and allow complex testing not otherwise possible. The following research projects will be supported by CAREN:

- Fundamental research: measure effects of sensory inputs (e.g., visual, auditory, vestibular, tactile);

- Early diagnosis related research: quantify behavioral indicators for early detection of disorders;

- Applied rehabilitation research: provide real-time feedback to the user, thus allowing rapid correction of therapeutic movements;

- Sports medicine research: optimize training techniques for peak performance and injury prevention; and

- Research on rehabilitation transfer to daily life: model environments that allow more real-life training for enhancing laboratory or clinic based rehabilitation.

Broader Impacts:

The impact should be felt both regionally and nationally. At the national level, the proposed system could have great implications for improving the quality of life of individuals with disabilities and older adults. At the local level, the VR equipment will be integrated into a number of courses and will engage K-12 students. It is expected that the engagement of students through the REU program can greatly impact undergraduate research. There is a substantial industrial partnership and potential for technology transfer.


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I. Handzic and K. B. Reed. "Perception of Gait Patterns that Deviate from Normal and Symmetric Biped Locomotion," Frontiers in Psychology, v.6, 2015.


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