A virtual coatings application system has several features to enhance the realism of simulated spray painting. The system generally includes a display screen on which is defined a virtual surface (such as a truck door) that is intended to be virtually painted or coated by the user. Alternatively, the system includes a head-mounted display unit that displays a virtual spray painting environment in which the virtual surface is defined. The user operates an instrumented spray gun controller that outputs one or more signals representing data as to the status of the controls on the spray gun controller. The system also has a motion tracking system that tracks the position and orientation of the spray gun controller with respect to the virtual surface. Simulation software generates virtual spray pattern data in response to at least the data from the spray gun controller and the position and orientation data received from the tracking system. Virtual spray pattern images are displayed in real time on the virtual surface in accordance with the accumulation of virtual spray pattern data at each location on the virtual surface.
Jason M. Ebensberger; Michael J. Bolick; Jeremiah G. Treloar; Richard J. Klein II; Eric C. Peterson; Chad J. Zalkin; James B. Fisher; Leslie C. Hughes