Objective Measurement of Simulator Sickness and the Role of Visual-Vestibular Conflict Situations

Driving simulators are becoming more and more important: for research and development purposes, but also for education, training and even for recreation. The authors have conducted a series of studies on a problem that often occurs with driving simulators: simulator sickness. This phenomenon closely resembles the classically experienced motion sickness and make a user abort a simulator run within minutes. The authors present an experiment in which they studied the psychophysical reactions of subjects and recorded their neurovegetative activity, to improve understanding of the underlying causes of simulator sickness. The ultimate goal is to develop an objective measure for monitoring simulator users, so that sickness can be detected before it is perceived by the subject. The authors used a fixed-base simulator, mimicking an urban circuit with many sharp turns and traffic lights. Subjects were asked to indicate continuously their discomfort on a visual-analog scale. The authors studied 33 normal volunteers (19 became sick). Sickness correlated strongly with anxiety. The subjective discomfort readings correlated well with simultaneous neurovegetative data (especially skin resistance and temperature) and with a symptom scoring test administered after the experiment. There are no clear indications of an age or gender effect. The authors also present some evidence that more factors may cause simulator sickness than just a visual-vestibular conflict situation (anxiety, nauseating odors, etc.).

  • Corporate Authors:

    National Advanced Driving Simulator

    University of Iowa, 2401 Oakdale Boulevard
    Iowa City, IA  United States  52242-5003
  • Authors:
    • Bertin, RJV
    • Collet, C
    • Espie, S
    • Graf, W
  • Conference:
  • Publication Date: 2005


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: CD-ROM
  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: 14p
  • Monograph Title: Driving Simulation Conference, North America 2005

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01140748
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 28 2009 5:31PM