Netural Research: Virtual Reality for Hearts and Minds

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How do you teach children human anatomy, encourage them to make healthy lifestyle choices? Netural´s virtual reality technology, combined with medical expertise, offer solutions.

Netural takes part in a cooperation project run by the medical engineering cluster sponsored by Upper Austria´s regional government. In collaboration with the Upper Austrian Red Cross and Forte, the vocational training center run by Elisabethinen Linz GmbH&CoKG, Netural has created a successful prototype for the future of science education: 3D-goggles and an app make walks through the human heart possible. Enthusiastic feedback from the young target group encouraged the step from pilot to full project.

Encourage Children to make Healthy Lifestyle Choices

The project started out in 2016 with the intention to provide 4th year pupils with an exciting educational experience, using latest technology to illustrate human anatomy and create awareness for the benefits of healthy lifestyles.

Targeted Implementation

Using virtual reality, the children board a cartoon spaceship to take a trip through the human heart, exploring its structure and function. The psychological challenge in this project was creating an exciting an emotional experience for children without triggering anxieties. The main technical challenges arose from illustrating a complex structure like the human heart in a clear and simple way without oversimplifying. The cardiology unit at the Elisabethinen Hospital was very helpful here, providing the design team with the necessary medical know how.

The Virtual Trip Goes On

35 pupils of the Robinson school in Linzer visited Netural to test drive the virtual trip through the human heart. Their enthusiastic feedback encouraged the project team to enter the next research and development stage. This will include extended live testing, implementing the trip through the body as part of the biology course of a test school. In a parallel effort, the team will use latest technology to visualize five more body regions, covering all the important organs of the human body.

This project is a showcase for digital visualization in education. It neatly fits into a growing number of research projects that Netural has run in the field of eHealth.


During the last years, Netural has explored the application of virtual reality in healthcare and prevention, resulting in a number of successful research projects.

For more information about Netural´s e-Health competence, please contact Dr. Stephan Lechner (CTO) and Mag. Robert Hartmann (Senior Digital Health Consultant):,

Article: 05.07.2018




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