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Online 3 D Collaboration System For Engineering Education

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Emerging Trends in Engineering Education Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.1123.1 - 12.1123.11



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Paper Authors


Kurt Gramoll University of Oklahoma

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Kurt Gramoll is the Hughes Centennial Professor of Engineering and Director of the Engineering Media Lab at the University of Oklahoma. He received his B.S. degree in Civil Engineering and M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering, both from the University of Utah and received his Ph.D. in Engineering Science and Mechanics from Virginia Tech. He has developed and published several CDs and web-based sites for engineering education.

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Hengzhong Wen OU

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Hengzhong Wen is currently an engineer in JP Kenny. She was a Ph.D. student of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering at the University of Oklahoma from 2000 to 2007. Her research work focuses on online training system development and implementation. She received her bachelor degree in Mechanical Engineering in Mechanical Engineering College of Beijing Union University. She worked as an instructor and mechanical engineer in Beijing Chemical Equipment Factory for seven years, and then as a chief engineer at Beijing Hanwei Engineering Blasting Company of High Technology for one year.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Online 3D Collaboration System for Engineering Education

Abstract The Internet has provided new communication methods for most people is all walks of like, particularly for education and industry. It is common that people email friends, pay bills online and play games together when they are in two countries. Industry has employed video conference to discuss engineering problems and to share files. Education has utilized websites to present education and training materials and discussions. Generally, these applications employ two dimensional collaboration tools. As new Internet technologies develop and the computer processing speeds increase, constructing a real-time online engineering education and training collaboration tool for a team of remotely distributed learners has become an important research topic. However, it is a challenging task to develop and implement a true synchronized interactive three-dimensional system for online connected users. Major obstacles in developing and implementing such a system include large three-dimensional object data size, real-time three- dimensional world rendering, and bandwidth limitation.

This paper introduces the background of doing research on online synchronous three- dimensional engineering learning environment over the Internet for a group of people from various physically separated sites. It also reviews research that has been done in online distance engineering education and training. Finally, this paper presents a real online example, called "3D Bracket", which is designed to help engineering students understand concepts of torque, bending and superposition theory of Mechanics. In this learning environment the users are capable of designing and manipulating three-dimensional models, such as changing the view point and applying forces at various locations of the bracket. All participates are connected online, and are able to view the bracket deflection through a web-browser in real-time from any local. In addition, the students are allowed to exchange ideas via audio and text chat.

This research employs Adobe Director to generate online real-time three-dimensional model in this team-based engineering education environment. Adobe Flash Communication Server (recently renamed Flash Media Server) is used as the synchronous technology to invoke the synchronize changes among the multiple remote learners. The main purpose of this research is the design and implementation of a framework to integrate the instant audio communication and interactive three-dimensional models over the Internet. This framework makes the online real- time team engineering work possible. Introduction The Internet is changing Americans’ communication methods in many new ways. According to the survey of Pew Internet & American Life project, more than half (55%) of all online American youths ages 12-17 use online social networking sites [1]. Nearly two in five adult Internet users in the US (39%) have gone online to look for information about a place to live, up from 34% in 2004 to 27% in 2000 [2]. Fully 87% of online users have at one time used the Internet to carry out research on a scientific topic or concept [3]. The growth of the Internet is due to many reasons, but several obvious ones are its low cost, convenience, and time saving. Also fueling this growth is, the rapid improvement of Internet technologies, and increasing

Gramoll, K., & Wen, H. (2007, June), Online 3 D Collaboration System For Engineering Education Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--1913

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