Students from Tottenham University Technical College (TUTC) are being given access to Loco, a motion platform originally used as part of the world’s first brain-controlled fairground ride.
The engineering design project will see students and staff at the college attempting to build a replica of the Loco platform over the course of the coming academic year. In combination with Occulus Rift headsets, the platform has a variety of uses, from creating virtual reality flight simulators to supporting new forms of theatre and dance.
“This is an exciting project for the youth of North London,” said TUTC principal Nick Hindmarsh.
“One of our key objectives at Tottenham UTC is to improve employment prospects for our students and getting them ready for jobs in the Science, Technology, Sport, Health and Engineering industries that may not exist yet.”
The college, which provides 14-18 year olds with a STEM-focused curriculum, is connected with Tottenham Hotspur Football Club’s sport-led regeneration scheme. Ledley King, the former Spurs football club captain and current club ambassador, was in attendance at the launch event to give the club’s backing to the project.
“The facilities at Tottenham UTC are out of this world and I would have loved to have been given the opportunity to work on a school project like Loco when I was their age,” said King.
“It was a strange feeling riding Loco whilst wearing Oculus Rift because you really do feel like you’re on a fairground ride. I’m looking forward to seeing the students progress with their project and maybe coming back to test it out when it’s finished.”
As well as Spurs, the academy is supported by a range of other organisations and businesses, including Middlesex University, Stansted Airport, Festo, National Instruments, Mindsets and Fusion.