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BBL-IS Newsletter #2

Hi BBL members !

Here are some news about the Virtual Reality facility at BBL.
You can find all the already published newsletters here.

How can I use the BBL-IS for my research ?

The BBL-IS project management protocol document contains all the information you need to know to start a Virtual Reality project at the BBL-IS.

Current Projects

(Affective Virtual Maze) This project explores the impact of emotions on spatial navigation within 3D mazes in healthy participants but also in brain-damaged patients (amygdala and hippocampus).
This research endeavor could enhance our knowledge of how localized emotion-based neural functioning within immersive virtual environments contributes to the encoding and retrieval of spatial memories.
This project explores new type of training based on virtual exhibition to help musicians regulating their Musical Performance Anxiety (MPA). The known factors of this anxiety such as light, space or audience’s attitude will be modeled using avatars or environment rendering and combined to create realistic scenarios. Their potential impact on musicians during their performance will be investigated through an original combination of behavioral analysis and self-report.
The aim of this project is to study the mechanisms of the modulation of attentional orienting by reward reinforcement in brain-damaged patients suffering from neglect.This task will be also developed to assess neglect symptoms, as well as to help develop innovative cognitive rehabilitation, in a highly realistic, ecological, rich, multimodal, and controllable environment.

Mixing VR and fMRI technics, this project investigates how the context of encounteers impacts emotional (happy, angry...) and social (trustworthiness, dominance...) judgments about faces. Focusing also on proxemics measures and personality assessments, the project will generate a novel framework to characterize the neural mechanisms underlying the emergence of social representations of others.


  • A Memory upgrade has been done. The 8 computers composing the BBL-IS cluster have now 18Go RAM (previously 8Go).
  • Projectors' Lamps  have been replaced. Luminosity and color will be good for 2-3 years.
  • Projectors' alignment to the screens has been done. Immersion is better now.
  • Tracking Latency has been improved. The whole system is now able to adapt perspective projection corresponding to user's head location in 80ms (previously 120ms). We hope this will reduce motion sickness.
  • A mini-cluster composed of 3 computers has been built to allow the development of projects while the BBL-IS is used. This mini-cluster replicates the complex client-server architecture setup in the BBL-IS. Main parts of the projects can now be developed and tested outside the BBL-IS.
  • Cyberith Virtualizer will be integrated soon to allow users to navigate in virtual environments using natural walk.


  • A software library, called UnityCluster, has been developed to make 3D simulations in the BBL-IS using the Unity3D game engine. It is based on a previous library developed by Naem Baron, called GeVRE. UnityCluster is now the core software used to develop projects using the BBL-IS. This library will be constantly updated to integrate the latest Unity3D features and to manage BBL-IS specific issues.

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Brain and Behaviour Laboratory · Centre Médical Universitaire · Rue Michel Servet 1 · Genève 1206 · Switzerland

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