Augmented Reality for Disaster Risk Modelling

Location: Clayton, VIC

Duration: 5 months

Proposed start date: June 2019

Project Background

The Natural Hazards research group of Data61 has developed several computational tools for the simulation of natural hazards such as fires and floods, as well as evacuation of pedestrians in emergency situations. These models can assist local authorities and emergency services make more informed, evidence-based decisions when dealing with the potential consequences of natural disasters.

The group is now aiming at utilizing these numerical models in a virtual and augmented reality context for research and education purposes. This project will be focused on setting up an augmented reality demonstrator by combining a 3D-printed environment with one of our solvers. Specifically, the student will build a small-scale evacuation model to demonstrate how augmented reality can be used to visualize the evacuation unfold and interact with the scene.

Research to be Conducted

CSIRO Data 61 anticipates that the project will be decomposed into several phases:

  • Setup of the physical scenario. This will involve designing a relevant layout for the evacuation and setting it up in our mixed reality lab using a 3D printer and available video cameras
  • Design an algorithm to scan the 3D-printed environment and enable its import as a navigation mesh into the CSIRO-developed library PiXIE (developed within CSIRO’s Workspace platform)
  • Setup the computational model and run evacuation scenarios with PiXIE and Workspace
  • Setup the augmented reality demonstrator using PiXIE’s results on the 3D-printed environment via Microsoft Hololens AR headsets

Skills Required

We are looking for a PhD student with the following skills:


  • Experience in augmented and virtual reality technology
  • Experience with 3D printing technology
  • Programming experience in one or more of Python, C++ and C#
  • Good communication skills


  • Experience in 3D geometry and rendering programming
  • Experience with computer vision and point cloud software libraries such as OpenCV and PCL
  • Knowledge of computational modelling
  • Prior knowledge of navigation meshes

Expected Outcomes

It is anticipated that the student will be able to produce a demonstrator of an augmented reality scenario of an evacuation. This will combine a 3D-printed model of a room to evacuate built by the student with a numerical model of the evacuation. The demonstrator will form the basis for further applications of VR and AR technologies to natural hazards modelling.

The student will also be required to produce a report that summarizes and documents the work carried out during the internship.

Additional Details

The intern will receive $3,000 per month of the internship, usually in the form of stipend payments.

It is expected that the intern will primarily undertake this research project during regular business hours, spending at least 80% of their time on-site with the industry partner.  The intern will be expected to maintain contact with their academic mentor throughout the internship either through face-to-face or phone meetings as appropriate.

The intern and their academic mentor will have the opportunity to negotiate the project’s scope, milestones and timeline during the project planning stage.

Applications Close

17 April 2019


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