Campus Units

Mechanical Engineering, Virtual Reality Applications Center

Document Type

Conference Proceeding


SPIE Commercial + Scientific Sensing and Imaging

Publication Version

Published Version

Link to Published Version

Publication Date


Journal or Book Title

Proceedings of SPIE



First Page




Conference Title

Three-Dimensional Imaging, Visualization, and Display 2017

Conference Date

April 9-13, 2017


Anaheim, CA


Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive procedure that uses time varying short pulses of magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain. In this method, a magnetic field generator (“TMS coil”) produces small electric fields in the region of the brain via electromagnetic induction. This technique can be used to excite or inhibit firing of neurons, which can then be used for treatment of various neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, stroke, migraine, and depression. It is however challenging to focus the induced electric field from TMS coils to smaller regions of the brain. Since electric and magnetic fields are governed by laws of electromagnetism, it is possible to numerically simulate and visualize these fields to accurately determine the site of maximum stimulation and also to develop TMS coils that can focus the fields on the targeted regions. However, current software to compute and visualize these fields are not real-time and can work for only one position/orientation of TMS coil, severely limiting their usage. This paper describes the development of an application that computes magnetic flux densities (h-fields) and visualizes their distribution for different TMS coil position/orientations in real-time using GPU shaders. The application is developed for desktop, commodity VR (HTC Vive), and fully immersive VR CAVETM systems, for use by researchers, scientists, and medical professionals to quickly and effectively view the distribution of h-fields from MRI brain scans.


This is a proceeding published as Vijay K. Kalivarapu, Ciro Serrate, Ravi L. Hadimani, "Real-time visualization of magnetic flux densities for transcranial magnetic stimulation on commodity and fully immersive VR systems," Proc. SPIE 10219, Three-Dimensional Imaging, Visualization, and Display 2017, 102190P (10 May 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2262164. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner

Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE)



File Format


Published Version


Article Location