Virtual Reality (VR)

Assembly Line

Hitachi's metaverse tech helps keep Japanese craftsmanship alive

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✍️ Author: Yoichiro Hiroi

🔖 Topics: Metaverse, Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality

🏢 Organizations: Hitachi

Hitachi has developed a metaverse-based system that lets skilled workers run remote demonstrations using real-world factory equipment, with an eye toward industries where know-how is concentrated among aging veterans. This reporter experienced it firsthand with demonstration equipment. Through a virtual reality headset, an image of an instructor’s hands was superimposed on a drum-shaped machine.

Read more at Nikkei Asia

Warping in the real world: Remote factory meetings in 360°

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✍️ Author: Torbjørn Netland

🔖 Topics: Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality

🏢 Organizations: Stanley Black Decker, Avatour

In a research project with SB&D, ETH students Michael Stegmaier and Cesare Primultini led our field test of interactive mixed reality live streaming technology in manufacturing. Michael and Cesare conceptualized two ways to transmit live-streaming 360° video from the shop floor of SB&D: A first-person view where a camera was mounted to a hard hat and a fixed-position view where the camera could be mounted inside a machine during a changeover. Live-streamed 360° video would be transmitted to a cloud, where participants would meet virtually from anywhere (see figure below). Back in 2021, we identified Avatour, a startup from California, as our project’s only viable software provider.

Where can this technology find good use? High-potential use cases are safety audits, training programs, and tasks that require the presence of an expert or coach. Other use cases are factory tours, external or internal audits, technology transfer projects, inspections, and on-the-job coaching of individuals.

Read more at Better Operations

How Prominent Video Game Technology is Changing Industrial Training and Manufacturing

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✍️ Author: Matthew Gideon

🔖 Topics: Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality

🏢 Organizations: GridRaster, Kenco Group

Panigrahi explains that GridRaster’s XR equipment is currently being used in the manufacturing of airplane wings, spacecraft parts and automobile components, adding that AR and VR have emerged as a crucial part of repair maintenance for these sectors. “Having a headset that can give you instructions, workflows overlayed on top of the asset you are fixing, and working through each and every instruction has been not only a time-saver but a life-saver as well because you’re ensuring those human errors can be completely eliminated,” Panigrahi says.

Read more at Supply Chain Brain

This Robotic Avatar Welds, Cuts, Lifts While Controlled By A VR Operator Over 5G

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✍️ Author: John Koetsier

🔖 Topics: industrial robot, virtual reality, 5G, welding

🏢 Organizations: Sarcos Robotics

Guardian XT is the latest “highly dextrous mobile industrial robot” from Sarcos. Think of it as the top half of your body with super-strong arms, configurable attachments for different tasks, a built-in battery pack, cameras and sensors for eyes, and a 5G connection for taking orders from a remote operator who sees what the robot sees via a VR headset and wears a motion capture suit so the robot does what he or she does.

With different attachments on its arms, Guardian XT can weld, sand, grind, cut, inspect, and more. Over time the company will be developing more quick-swap attachments for more capabilities, just like an excavating company might purchase different buckets or attachments for its machinery as different jobs have varying requirements. Plus, there’s a three-fingered robotic hand coming that can hold and use many of the tools a human uses today.

Read more at Forbes

CEOs Are Dooming Business Travel — Maybe for Good

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✍️ Authors: Alexander Pearson, Tara Patel, William Wilkes

🔖 Topics: augmented reality, virtual reality

🏢 Organizations: Akzo Nobel, Aptiv, Shell

Take Akzo Nobel NV, Europe’s biggest paint maker, for instance. At its Amsterdam headquarters, Chief Executive Officer Thierry Vanlancker has spent the past year watching his manufacturing head, David Prinselaar, flap his arms, madly gesticulate and seemingly talk to himself while “visiting” 124 plants by directing staff with high-definition augmented-reality headgear on factory floors. A task that meant crisscrossing the globe in a plane before is now done in a fraction of the time — and with no jet lag. For Vanlancker, there’s no going back.

Royal Dutch Shell Plc has created online control rooms with interactive 3D simulations of oil platforms and plants, giving engineers virtual access from home. In Troy, Michigan, Kevin Clark, the CEO of Aptiv Plc, a former car parts unit of General Motors Co., is using drones and Oculus augmented-reality headsets to show customers the performance and manufacturing run rates of plants in Mexico, Hungary, or China.

Read more at Bloomberg (Paid)

Step inside Neles’ factory from your sofa

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🔖 Topics: virtual reality

🏢 Organizations: Neles, eSite

The virtual Neles factory consists of 360° photos, merged with a lidar scanned point cloud. It enables us to take measurements in 3D, make routings and mark various points of interest, such as HSE equipment locations and emergency exits. We can also add videos, photos, pdfs, IoT data – and the list goes on.

What do we aim to achieve with the new virtual factory? The global situation in 2020 has shown that going virtual is sometimes the one and only way to verify the high-quality pledge of Neles “on site”. We want to show how we care for our customers and can adapt to changing global environments by developing new ways of working – not only during the current pandemic, but also keeping future requirements in mind.

Read more at Neles Blog

Virtual Reality Tour of Protolabs' Manufacturing Facility