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The augmented reality (AR) sandpit is a hands-on, interactive visualisation tool that allows viewers to watch and understand how natural resources (like water) interact with a physical landscape. The AR sandpit can show a range of hydrological and geomorphological processes including water flow in catchments, flooding, evaporation, erosion, drought and even volcanoes! Data from the AR sandbox can also be captured and displayed for demonstrating to project stakeholders and decision makers.
An AR sandpit (or sandbox) combines kinetic sand (sand mixed with silicone oil), a projector and software to create a colourful interactive topographic map.
The relationship between natural resources and catchment zones is easily demonstrated by moulding and contouring the sand to different heights and depths. The projections on the landscape refresh instantly, providing a colourful enriched display for the viewer.
The first AR sandboxes were developed by researchers at the University of California - Davis who have made the software and instructions freely available online.
Rous County Council officially launched the AR sandpit late 2020 at a water-themed event at the Living School in Lismore. Due to event restrictions and the logistics of setting up the AR sandpit, there will only be a limited number of displays this year. To request the AR sandbox at your school or event, you must first fit the following criteria:
The AR sandpit is not an easy display to transport and set up, therefore we are currently looking for a permanent display environment where people can visit for demonstrations. Council will, however, try to accommodate enquiries to the best of our resourcing and scheduling. To make an enquiry, contact us via our 'Contact us' form or email: email@example.com