Boeing Bionics Allow Teammates to Suit up for Safety
In Boeing’s commercial division, the exoskeleton vest is in use or planned for use as personal protective equipment in the 737, 767, 777 and 787 Dreamliner programs. Teams at a number of Boeing sites have tested the vest since 2018. It is rolling out as an innovative enterprise standard tool designed to lessen the pressure mechanics bear as they work repetitive jobs at chest level and above.
“When you activate the vest, it’s somewhere between 5 to 18 pounds (2 to 8 kilograms) offloaded from the wearer,” said Dr. Christopher Reid, a Boeing engineer and Associate Technical Fellow who specializes in ergonomics and wearable technology. “It reduces the stress on the shoulders and ultimately reduces injuries.”
Optimized processes for machinery and equipment: How the industry uses Visual Assistance
Today, troubleshooting, machine acceptance, commissioning and training are established use cases for visual assistance in industrial companies, as also stressed by a recent survey of 39 VDMA member companies.
Machine operators benefit from visual and auditory guidance provided by one or more service experts during live support. A mapping of the field of view onto the machine via the user interface of mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets, or smart glasses, ensures simple and immediate virtual interaction. AR annotations, a continuous zoom or the possibility to transmit high-resolution images even with a bad internet connection are helpful features of oculavis SHARE. As smart tools for the expert within the video call they enable concrete instructions to technical staff, e.g., for repairs or in training situations.
This Factory Is Using AR To Help With A Hiring Crunch
One of the challenges associated with AR has been in trying to turn a complex physical process, such as wiring a component or working a machine, into code that could run on a headset. Taqtile CEO Dirck Schou said the company’s software makes programming for AR glasses simple, and based on my conversation with Tim Lecrone and Beau Wileman of PBC, the software Taqtile developed is easy to use. Once PBC has created a module for training it pays for itself after 1.44 employees train with it according to Wileman.
The cobots help handle processes that are repetitive and free up people to take on different tasks. Given how tough it is to hire people to work in the factory, using them helps reduce the overall staffing load. But the biggest gains so far have been in training and getting employees quickly up to speed. Now PBC can hire a person and get them working on a machine in a few days as opposed to that taking up to six weeks. It also helps reduce the cost of training a cobot and staff. Wileman told me that an intern, which costs $17 an hour, can train a cobot or map out a process in less than four hours, while it might cost around $30,000 for an outside expert to manually train a cobot.
Introducing Microsoft Cloud for Manufacturing
What makes the Microsoft Cloud for Manufacturing unique is our commitment to industry-specific standards and communities, such as the Open Manufacturing Platform, the OPC Foundation, and the Digital Twins Consortium, as well as the co-innovation with our rich ecosystem of partners.