3-D display offers chilling look at Nagasaki after A-bomb attack

[From The Asahi Shimbun, where the story includes additional images]

Virtual Nagasaki 1945

3-D display offers chilling look at Nagasaki after A-bomb attack

March 05, 2014
By Miyuki Kanno / Staff Writer

NAGASAKI–A new 3-D imaging display system allowing viewers to experience the devastation of Nagasaki immediately after the 1945 atomic bombing opened here on March 3.

Virtual Genshiya (Virtual atomic wasteland), developed by Takashi Fujiki, a professor of technology education at Nagasaki University, uses computer graphics to give viewers a panoramic view of a 500-meter radius of ground zero just after the blast.

The system is on display at the Art and Tech Exhibition Lab Sosokan, an art gallery that opened on the Nagasaki University campus on March 3.

The imagery was created using photos taken over a year from Aug. 9, 1945, the day the bomb was dropped.

Visitors wearing special glasses can view the aftermath of the attack, including images of the destroyed Urakami Cathedral and Shiroyama elementary school, on three 24-inch 3-D TV sets.

The system produces an overview of the area around the epicenter of the blast from an altitude of 500 meters, where the atomic bomb, referred to as “Fat Man,” exploded over the city.

With the aid of a video-game controller, viewers can also re-live the experience that survivors had walking through the ruins of the city.

Fujiki hopes to develop a system that allows people who visited atomic-bomb relics to learn about how they looked immediately after the explosion later on Virtual Genshiya, using tour data on their smartphones.

“It will connect the nuclear-destroyed city’s past with the present,” said Fujiki, 57.

Virtual Genshiya is an improved version of a system that Fujiki announced at the Nagasaki National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims in February 2013.

Three 47-inch 3-D TV sets have been installed at the facility so that the earlier system can be used for peace education starting from April. It will target students visiting Nagasaki on school trips.

The Sosokan art gallery exhibits paintings, sculptures and other works created by teachers and students specializing in art and technology at the university’s faculty of education. The Virtual Genshiya display will run through March 28.

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