Immersive molecular visualization and interactive modeling with commodity hardware

John E. Stone, Axel Kohlmeyer, Kirby L. Vandivort, Klaus Schulten

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Continuing advances in development of multi-core CPUs, GPUs, and low-cost six-degree-of-freedom virtual reality input devices have created an unprecedented opportunity for broader use of interactive molecular modeling and immersive visualization of large molecular complexes. We describe the design and implementation of VMD, a popular molecular visualization and modeling tool that supports both desktop and immersive virtual reality environments, and includes support for a variety of multi-modal user interaction mechanisms. A number of unique challenges arise in supporting immersive visualization and advanced input devices within software that is used by a broad community of scientists that often have little background in the use or administration of these technologies. We share our experiences in supporting VMD on existing and upcoming low-cost virtual reality hardware platforms, and we give our perspective on how these technologies can be improved and employed to enable next-generation interactive molecular simulation tools for broader use by the molecular modeling community.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in Visual Computing - 6th International Symposium, ISVC 2010, Proceedings
Number of pages12
EditionPART 2
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
Event6th International, Symposium on Visual Computing, ISVC 2010 - Las Vegas, NV, United States
Duration: Nov 29 2010Dec 1 2010

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
NumberPART 2
Volume6454 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Other6th International, Symposium on Visual Computing, ISVC 2010
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityLas Vegas, NV

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computer Science(all)


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