AR Technology Help Researchers Learn More About Animals

Anita - Feb 01, 2019

AR Technology Help Researchers Learn More About Animals

Researchers put the AR system in fish to find out more information about fish’s active sensing.

Animals are known to have an incredible sense of their locations. Their amazing natural abilities sometimes might surprise you. To get more about these abilities, Johns Hopkins and NJIT’s researchers tested how active sensing is controlled by the brain by using AR Technology.

Eric Fortune, a Biology Associate Professor and head of the study, said:


It may be the first research in which scientists used augmented reality (AR) to probe the most basic process of active sensing based on movement in real time, which almost animals take advantage to notice their locations.

According to the research, which was released in the Current Biology journal, the glass knifefish really have small active sensing movements. The sensory feedback control is believed to be used to enhance the sensory information of the fish.

In other words, the glass knifefish, and most of the other animals use a system which has dual controls to generate active sensing movements.

How important is it for animals?

According to Fortune, these fish would follow their refuge position. However, the recent findings showed that they create small movements which reminded scientists of human eyes’ small movements. He shared:


The research widely uses the AR system that Fortune is mentioning above. Particularly, scientists put the glass knifefish in a tank and used a digital AR shelter moving based on the fish’s motion.

Then, they monitored the fish’s movement in this tank. These fish responded by swimming the farthest to gather sensory information when the AR shelter mirrored their movement.

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                                                                                 Electric fish in augmented reality

The fish’s two control loops may be popular in other kinds of animals like marine or land animals.

A loop controls the collected information thanks to the active sensing movements. And the remaining one is responsible for capturing the information and informing the function of the motor of the next actions.

It could open the door for the discovery of specific neurons to replace these control loops in the fish in particular, and in all animals in general in the coming time.

In addition, this study can even lead to the findings of human active sensing behavior.


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