Virtual reality for training-the impact of smell on presence, cybersickness, fatigue, stress and knowledge transfer

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Vasconcelos Raposo,J
Miguel Correia Melo
Maximino Bessa
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The area of professional training using virtual reality technologies has received considerable investment due to the advantages that virtual reality provides over traditional training. In this paper, we present an experiment whose goal was to analyse the impact that an additional stimulus has on the effectiveness of a virtual environment designed to train firefighters. The additional stimulus is a smell, more specifically the smell of burnt wood, which is consistent with the audiovisual content presented, and the effectiveness of the VE is measured through participant's feeling of presence, cybersickness, fatigue, stress and transfer of knowledge. The results indicate that, although the VE was successful in transferring knowledge, the addition of smell did not influence any of the measured variables. In the discussion section, we present the various factors that we believe have influenced this result. As future work, more experiments will be performed, with other stimuli, to understand better which stimuli increase participant's feeling of presence in the VE. © 2019 IEEE.