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Detecting a Concussion: Charles River Analytics Develops VR Tech to Help First Responders Save Lives

Charles River Analytics Inc., developer of intelligent systems solutions, has received funding from the US Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity (USAMRAA) to develop ADVISOR-Tethered Forward Deployable (TFD). Built in collaboration with Dr. Carey Balaban, Dr. Michael Hoffer, Dr. Lewis Nashner, and FOVE, Inc., ADVISOR-TFD will advance our existing ADVISOR system to help first-level responders better assess brain injury on the battlefield and make return-to-duty decisions.

ADVISOR is a patent-pending virtual reality (VR) system that helps US military first responders facilitate in-theater concussion screening. Using a ruggedized set of VR hardware and embedded software, ADVISOR combines over 15 oculomotor, vestibular, and reaction time (OVRT) tests to gather the data first responders need to make critical decisions.

“With ADVISOR-TFD, we are developing intelligent, automated patient response data processing and decision-support methods for ADVISOR’s existing OVRT assessments,” said Dr. Sean Tobyne, Scientist at Charles River Analytics and Principal Investigator on the ADVISOR-TFD effort. “Lightweight and ruggedized, ADVISOR-TFD will guide responders through safe, consistent, and reliable triage of potentially concussed service members in a form factor designed to work on the battlefield.”

ADVISOR-TFD will include a Ruggedized Screening Kit (RGD-SK) with two primary hardware components: the Graphics and Data Processing Unit, which enables high-fidelity VR stimulus presentation and response capture; and a Ruggedized VR Head-Mounted Display (HMD), which builds on commercially available equipment.


ADVISOR HMD version progression (from left to right). V1 proof-of-concept smartphone-based (SB) prototype; V2 TX2-tethered HMD; V3 refined SB prototype for assessing 500Hz data acquisition feasibility; V4 current SB prototype; and V5 proof-of-concept Linux-based VR HMD configuration.

The underlying technology that drives ADVISOR is available for commercial purchase, via our beta user licensing program, for use in vestibular and balance research applications.

Contact us to learn more about ADVISOR-TFD and our other Mixed Reality / Virtual Reality / Augmented Reality capabilities.

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Charles River Analytics to Update Concussion Assessment Tech for Army Medical Responders

This material is based upon work supported by the DHA SBIR Program/Clinical and Rehabilitative Medicine Research Program (CRMRP)/Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) under Purchase Order No. W81XWH20P0024. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the US Army Medical Research Development Command (USAMRDC) or US Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity (USAMRAA).

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