Generating Topography Using Augmented Reality

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P. J. Gelinas Junior High School Earth Science classes explored the concept of topography using an Augmented Reality Sandbox instrument. 

The Augmented Reality Sandbox makes use of a Microsoft Kinect 3D sensor to generate powerful simulations and visualizations on a box filled with white sand using a data projector. The resulting ARS allows students to create topography models by shaping real sand, which is then augmented in real time by an elevation color map, topographic contour lines and simulated water. 

The system teaches concepts such as how to read a topography map, the meaning of contour lines, and determining stream flow, watershed and drainage basins.