Deep Reality: An underwater VR experience to promote relaxation by unconscious HR, EDA, and brain activity biofeedback

Judith Amores, Anna Fuste

We present an interactive virtual reality (VR) experience that uses biometric information for reflection and relaxation. We monitor in real-time brain activity using a modified version of the Muse EEG and track heart rate (HR) and electro dermal activity (EDA) using an Empatica E4 wristband. We use this data to procedurally generate 3D creatures and change the lighting of the environment to reflect the internal state of the viewer in a set of visuals depicting an underwater audiovisual composition. These 3D creatures are created with the aim to unconsciously influence the body signals of the observer via subtle pulses of light, movement, and sound. Our goal is to decrease heart rate and respiration by subtle, almost imperceptible light flickering, sound pulsations, and slow movements of these creatures to increase relaxation.


CHI 2019
Amores, J., Fuste, A., Richer, R., & Maes, P. (2019, May). Deep Reality: Towards Increasing Relaxation in VR with subtly changing light, sound and movement based on HR, EDA, and EEG. In Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems . ACM.

SIGGRAPH 2019 Virtual, Augmented, and Mixed Reality
Judith Amores, Anna Fuste, Robert Richer and Pattie Maes. 2019. Deep Reality: An Underwater VR experience to promote relaxation by unconscious HR, EDA and brain activity biofeedback. In ACM SIGGRAPH 2019 Virtual, Augmented, and Mixed Reality (SIGGRAPH '19). ACM, Los Angeles, CA, USA, ACM 978-1-4503-6320-4/19/07. 10.1145/3306449.3328818


  1. What is the current stage of the project?

    DeepReality has been tested for technical functioning and has been demoed by hundreds of people at Siggraph and our internal member events. We are looking forward to conduct a user study that evaluates its effects on HRV, brain activity, and respiration for relaxation purposes.

Experimental Installation in a sensory deprivation tank: