About FLASH FLOOD
Flash Flood! was designed to act as an outreach tool for the NERC-FFIR project, and was funded by the project’s Public Engagement fund. It is a virtual reality experience designed specifically for schools and events, allowing anyone without virtual reality training or experience to take part and explore the valley.
The application places a user inside a virtual river valley as it experiences a catastrophic flash flood. The flood causes massive changes to the geomorphology of the river through processes of erosion and deposition, changing the shape of the river, stripping out plants and trees, and even moving boulders. This is all based on a real event that happened in 2007 on a small river in the uplands of the North of England.
Real TERRAIN DATA
The Flash Flood! valley is built using data collected by geomorphologists (scientists who seek to understand the changing shapes of the planet’s surface) in the field, both before and after the actual flash flood event, and the animation of the flooding is based on results of computer modelling.
Built for Virtual Reality
Flash Flood! was built to be used by anyone and everyone, so comfort and usability have been key from the start. We have been through several rounds of user testing to maximise the comfort of the experience (particularly with regards to VR sickness), the accessibility of the controls, and the visual fidelity to make the environment as engaging as possible.
Our client, SeriousGeoGames, has been able to take the Flash Flood! experience to multiple events and has won multiple awards including a top 3 finish in the public vote for best exhibit at the NERC Into the Blue expo. We worked closely with researchers to develop Flash Flood! and are continuing our work with SeriousGeoGames on the upcoming Flash Flood: Town project.