Evaluation of dynamic thermal comfort of virtual reality headsets in motion
Authors: Yujing Wang, Chongfeng Li, Jiawang Wang, Yufei Hou, Yun Wang, Xin Wang
Abstract: Virtual reality (VR) headset has been increasingly applied in various activities with longer wearing time, such as gaming or training. Users no longer stay in a static state but are more likely to perform a series of body movements. This paper focuses on the dynamic thermal comfort of head mounted displays (HMDs) to explore the VR experience in state of motion. Eight participants wore three types of HMDs to conduct thermal comfort tests while doing light exercises. Thermal comfort was quantified by subjective rating and miniature data logger measurement. The results showed that wearing HMDs in motion caused more subjective thermal discomfort than in rest. Low airtightness of HMDs led to a lower increase in temperature and humidity inside the device in motion, yet it would also reduce the immersiveness of the VR experience due to light leakage. Furthermore, there was no significant difference in the subjective discomfort level of the three types of devices. In order to improve the overall user experience, the development of HMDs should consider design tradeoffs in terms of materials, shape, finishing etc., maximizing user comfort while ensuring optimal audiovisual display effect.
Keywords: Virtual reality, Head mounted displays, Dynamic thermal comfort
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