ITS Lecturer Developed Augmented Reality to Study Indonesian Topography

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ITS Campus, ITS News – The topographic learning media in Indonesia, which until now is still supported by two-dimensional devices, causes students to learn only imaginatively. Seeing this, the lecturer at the Department of Geomatics Engineering of Sepuluh Nopember Institute of Technology (ITS) Surabaya, Indonesia, Agung Budi Cahyono ST MSc, tried to develop Topography Augmented Reality (Top-AR) in Indonesia.

Topography is a detailed study of the shape and features of the earth’s surface. Top-AR itself is a system that shows color degradation as a representation of differences in height, shape, the density of contour lines, and simulations of water movements on the face of the earth. “This product is ideal to be used as a direct learning tool about earth science,” Agung said while showing his work.

He explained this system consists of four components, namely computers, sensors, projectors, and sand media. This Top-AR works by scanning the movement of sand through a sensor, then transferring the scan to the computer. The computer will sort the surface height of the sand. A result is a form of color visualization and contour lines that will later be visualized into the sand through the projector. “This system allows users to create surface topographic models in real terms,” he added.

Top-AR is a prototype that was made the first time at the University of California Davis, in the United States, with the name Arsandbox. Based on the website of the Arsandbox maker, there is only one Top-AR development registrar in Indonesia. “And it was developed in Surabaya, precisely in ITS,” said the Geomatics Engineering lecturer.

Agung said, this prototype had already been exhibited at several events held by the ITS Geomatics Engineering Department, a number of international geospatial seminars, and even had been ordered by the PT Timah Indonesia museum in Pangkal Pinang.

Agung also hopes that this Top-AR can provide benefits especially to Indonesian students and society in increasing understanding of the surface of the earth. He also emphasized that he would continue to develop the system with his team. “This is still version 1.0, in the future, it will be improved with a number of things so that the level of accuracy and visualization will be better,” said the graduate of Universite de La Rochelle, France. (vi/saa/ITS Public Relations Officer/alhadi)