Interactive Media Systems, TU Vienna

Virtual Simulation and On-Site Training for First Responders

Research project in the area of Virtual and Augmented Reality.

Keywords: Virtual Reality, Immersive, First Responders, Training, Multi-User, Collaboration.

About this Project

The project’s goal is to develop and evaluate the first fully mobile, generic, multi-user immersive virtual reality platform. It will be specifically designed for the needs of training first responder personnel, such as fire brigades, paramedics, police forces and other disaster relief units. We intend to design and develop a highly versatile, mobile setup to allow quick deployment at different real-world locations.

Project Partners

M²D MasterMind Development GmbH

Funding provided by


Additional Information


Over the past decade, VR-based training in disaster preparedness has been increasingly recognized as an important adjunct to traditional modalities of real-life drills. Multiple studies have highlighted VR applications in disaster training. This increased practice realism enables responders to gauge their individual and/or team’s ability to execute tasks and decision-making under more closely representative conditions. In essence, the immersive environment incorporated in VR-based training and exercise applications not only offers the realism that classroom-based instructive teaching lacks, but also may reduce the time and cost burden that real-life drills and tabletop exercises can place on participating organizations. Using VR technology, training can be provided in a controlled setting that mimic real-life situations as closely as possible and that can be repeated unlimited times. Repetition time as well as the feeling of presence that is provided in VR both have positive effects on task performance, enabling the learning situation to be experienced as a real context. This in turn promotes experiential learning as well as the development of operational and formal thinking by facilitating the exploration of different possibilities.