St. Pierre: THE EFFECTS OF SYSTEM LATENCY, FREQUENCY, AND AMPLITUDE ON SIMULATOR SICKNESS IN A HELMET MOUNTED DISPLAY

Title: THE EFFECTS OF SYSTEM LATENCY, FREQUENCY, AND AMPLITUDE ON SIMULATOR SICKNESS IN A HELMET MOUNTED DISPLAY

Dissertation Defense
9:00am, Tuesday, November 20th, Room 419 Brackett Hall

Dr. Eric Muth (advisor)
Dr. Richard Tyrrell (committee member), Dr. Chris Pagano (committee member), and Dr. Adam Hoover (committee member)

Abstract:

The relationship between the occurrence of simulator sickness (SS) and several characteristics of latency (i.e., added latency, amplitude of latency, and frequency of latency) in a helmet-mounted display (HMD) were explored in this study. The experience of SS while using an HMD has often been attributed to system latency. These findings are typical in research where HMDs with head trackers are used. In studies without head trackers, a relationship between SS and system latency has not been observed. Wu et al. (2011) found varying amplitude of latency and frequency of latency in systems utilizing head trackers as sensors. The same variability was not found in systems using cameras as sensors. The current study explored the effects of added latency, amplitude of latency, and frequency of latency on the experience of SS in HMDs while viewing a real world scene. Participants wore a HMD and made multiple head movements while performing an object location task in the laboratory. Data sets were collected from 120 participants. Eleven participants withdrew prior to completion of the experiment. An independent sample t-test revealed a significant difference, t(58) = -2.86, p = 0.003, between SSQ peak scores in the presence of varying amplitude of latency and fixed amplitude of latency. In addition, an independent sample t-test revealed a significant difference, t(118) = -3.61, p < 0.001, between SSQ peak scores in the presence of 0.2 Hz frequency of latency and 0 Hz frequency of latency. Fisher's exact test revealed significantly more participants dropped out before completing the experiment because of the condition they were in, with the varying amplitude of latency condition having 7 out of the 11 drop outs in the study. The results of this study indicated that the elimination of varying amplitude of latency may lessen the experience of SS in HMDs. HMD systems should be developed in a way that minimizes sensor error, which was found by Wu et al. (2011) to be responsible for varying amplitude and frequency of latency. Further research should be performed to further explore main effects and any interaction between frequency and amplitude of latency in an HMD and the experience of SS.

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