UC Davis Today

two people use the KeckCAVES technology

Visualizing the world: KeckCAVES

UC Davis scientists are using virtual reality to probe and explore the mysteries of the Earth.

The W. M. Keck Center for Active Visualization in Earth Sciences — known as the ‘KeckCAVES’ — uses visualization software to create a 3-D immersive environment. In one afternoon, you can dive into the Pacific Ocean, study earthquakes in Japan and travel into the center of the Earth — all from the safety of a lab on campus. A powerful analytical tool to examine huge amounts of data, KeckCAVES is one of the few of its kind in the country.

Beyond earthquakes, researchers have used the KeckCAVES to study climate change, ancient microbial structures, the Earth’s interior, Antarctica, ocean patterns and Mars. The facility has also brought together artists and scientists to brainstorm new models of experiencing 3-D immersion. Click here to watch a video about KeckCAVES research.

Here at UC Davis, we are unlocking the secrets of the world every day.

(Photo of geology professor Magali Billen giving Paul Pfotenhauer, a University Communications broadcast specialist, a look at the 2011 earthquake in Japan inside the KeckCAVES, by Cheng Saechao/UC Davis)

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