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Immersive technology is an emerging technology that integrates digital content with virtual or physical environments in a way that allows the user to engage naturally with an alternative reality. In the defence space, it has most often been used to expose people through novel experiences to prepare and train for operational environments, using head-mounted devices. 

Globally, there is a vast market for immersive technology outside of defence. This market has boomed since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has created opportunity to use immersive technology in all sectors; from doctors practising surgery and using augmented reality for remote care, to workplaces introducing ‘collaborative space’. 

What QinetiQ is doing

Since the introduction of immersive technology into the defence industry, there has often been a sole focus on training and mission rehearsal, but at QinetiQ we are looking at using immersive technology in a more innovative way:

In hybrid working environments, QinetiQ helps organisations to develop agile proof of concept projects, enabling rapid innovation in immersive technologies. 

Furthermore, QinetiQ facilitates the co-creation of complex immersive environments for next-generation capabilities.

QinetiQ is made up of immersive engineers, human behaviour scientists and ex-military, creating an organisation that understands the technology, how it can provide benefit and how the end-user will respond. It enables us to bring concepts to reality very quickly, drawing on real-world experience.

immersive capability

Future Concepting


Extended Reality (XR)

Extended Reality graphic

On the spectrum of reality - with the physical world at one end and digital reality at the other - immersive technology consists of Augmented, Mixed and Virtual reality (collectively known as Extended Reality, or XR)

At the far end of the spectrum, digital reality consists of a perfectly immersive experience, where all five of the senses are manipulated. This technology doesn't currently exist, but has been coined the 'Metaverse'.

Learn more about immersive technology from our TechWatch articles :