Imagine a future where watching movies, playing games, and engaging in virtual reality is an entirely immersive experience. A future where you can feel the cool breeze of a mountain breeze while watching a hiking documentary or smell the fresh ocean air during a beach scene in a movie. This is the future that Atmosfera is working towards, where technology and sensory experiences merge to create an entirely new level of entertainment. With the ability to detect visual cues and respond with appropriate sensory elements, Atmosfera has the potential to transport us to different worlds and create a truly personalized and enjoyable experience. The future of entertainment is here with Atmosfera.
Design Concept
As our lives gradually move further indoors, we find our species facing new challenges. By 2030, one of every ten people will be working from home full-time. This creates a major gap in exposure to the outside world and the various immersive experiences it presents to us. Our body craves an escape to an environment which stimulates our senses and helps us gain back some of the lost exposure to our biosphere due to our work habits. To approach this gap, we have designed Atmosfera, a space-age environmental augmentation system which shakes up how humans perceive their ambience. As many of us experienced during the year of 2020, this leads to long term sensory trauma in one form or another. As more and more people choose to work at home, humanity gains more control over their lives but also reduces their time spent commuting and spending time outdoors. Over time, this will have a detrimental effect on the human sensory and nervous system which must be kept well stimulated over time. 
In 2022, Robert LiKamWa and AliReza Bahremand developed an intricate software to synthesize smell for virtual experiences and paired it with a virtual reality system, building a “Smell Engine”, also known as a Virtual Augmentation system. This research, done at the School of Arts Media and Engineering at Arizona State University was focused on building a software foundation for odor synthesis, an area where there was a gap in research, most of which was built around hardware development. The Smell Engine, built into Atmosfera, receives visual inputs from sensors built on the surface of the device. These inputs are configured by an artificial intelligence (AI) chipboard built into the device. The AI comprehends the visual environment and sends transmissions to the smell mixer component which estimates to recreate an olfactory experience complementary to the visual experience. The Smell Engine has the ability to localize odors which can even help create a spatial experience which helps the user perceive their environment while also maintaining a sensory tether between real and virtual experience. 
Atmosfera is a compelling opportunity to synthesize physical odors that enhance what a user would experience while they are watching a movie, playing a game or even reading a book. Atmosfera is also a necessary step towards sensory stimulation and how our species must adapt to spending more and more time indoors. These are necessary steps we must take as we try to meet our Sustainable Goals set for 2023. We specifically find Good Health and Well-Being to be our target goal. Health and well-being is a vital goal and through sensory stimulation, we hope to help people avoid conditions like seasonal affective disorder (SAD), manic depression and even persistent depressive disorder. Many existing works can recreate pre-mixed odors but Atmosfera, with the help of the Smell Engine revolutionizes the industry by designing a system to use visual cues and build an immersive experience creating an emotional and metaphysical escape from reality and leading the path for olfactory and sensory therapy.
Designer
Silvon Lopes, slopes2@asu.edu
Ritwic Singh, rsing136@asu.edu
Research
The Smell Engine: A system for artificial odor synthesis in virtual environments.
Robert LiKamWa, Associate professor in the School of Arts, Media and Engineering (AME) and the School of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering (ECEE) | ASU
Back to Top