In particular, AR is expected to be used in industry, and head-mounted displays (HMDs) dedicated to AR have now become a commodity, and their use in a wide range of situations is being considered. So in this article, what is AR? From this basic information, we will explain why it is attracting attention in the manufacturing industry and its benefits.
Table of contents
- What is AR? Differences in VR
- Utilization of AR in manufacturing industry
- Optimization of maintenance and inspection using AR
- remote training
- Benefits of AR in the manufacturing industry
- Advantage 1. Reduction of overhead costs
- Advantage 2. Improved efficiency of maintenance operations
- Advantage 3. Work instructions from a remote location
- AR utilization using Microsoft HoloLens
What is AR? Differences in VR
AR, also known as “Augmented Reality,” is a technology that projects digital images onto images displayed through the camera function of smartphones and tablets. For example, “Pokemon GO”, which became very popular in 2016, is a typical example of AR use. In this game, you can experience a simulated world view of Pokemon by projecting Pokemon into the real world through your smartphone.
On the other hand, VR is “virtual reality,” and it is a technology that allows you to enter a virtual world created using 3D technology through HDR. Of course, you don’t actually go inside, but you can have an “experience as if you’re immersed” by watching the images displayed on the HMD.
Incidentally, recently, a technology called “MR ( Mixed Reality )” has also been attracting attention. This is a technology that allows virtual world information and images to exist in the real world “exactly as if they were there”, rather than simply projecting digital images onto the real world like AR.
Utilization of AR in manufacturing industry
When most people hear the terms AR and VR, they probably think of applications in fields such as computer games. So, how is AR being used in the manufacturing industry?
Optimization of maintenance and inspection using AR
In the manufacturing industry, various equipment is operated through product production activities. They require regular maintenance, and manuals related to the work are also organized. However, since there is limited room to improve efficiency when it comes to equipment maintenance and inspection, the bottleneck is not being able to reduce the burden on maintenance personnel. Particularly at sites where bulky technical materials must be brought in, work cannot proceed efficiently.
When performing maintenance and inspection using AR, by projecting information onto the equipment being maintained through an HMD, you can quickly reference information during maintenance and inspection, making work more efficient. It will also help reduce the burden on maintenance personnel, as there will be no need to carry around manuals.
AR is also attracting attention as a solution for connecting people in remote locations. For example, training engineers in the manufacturing industry requires either supporters to visit the site or training participants to gather in a specific location. AR is a technology that removes these barriers and supports remote training.
Supporters and trainees can share video and audio with each other through AR HDM, allowing trainees to absorb the technology while watching skilled technicians working right in front of them. Unlike viewing regular video, it is possible to project images from various angles, allowing engineers to efficiently improve their skills.
Benefits of AR in the manufacturing industry
So, what are the specific benefits of using AR in the manufacturing industry as described above?
Advantage 1. Reduction of overhead costs
When considering the overhead costs involved in technical training through AR-specific HDM, there is a potential to save a lot of costs. For example, reducing transportation costs can be considered. Both supporters and trainees can collaborate without having to leave their usual workplaces, reducing transportation costs. There is a high possibility that you will be able to reduce miscellaneous expenses, such as the cost of adjusting your training schedule accordingly.
Advantage 2. Improved efficiency of maintenance operations
By projecting various information onto regular equipment using AR technology, it is possible to identify areas that require priority maintenance and improve efficiency. For example, data obtained from sensors installed on equipment is aggregated on a cloud platform, and the data is analyzed and reported using AI to visualize the information necessary for maintenance. By projecting this information onto the equipment through an AR-specific HDM, you will be able to proceed with your work more efficiently.
Advantage 3. Work instructions from a remote location
Using AR technology, it is also possible to eliminate paper manuals by creating work manuals as 3D models and projecting them into the worker’s field of vision. In addition, it becomes possible for skilled technicians to issue work instructions while checking equipment information sent from a remote location, making it possible to prevent work errors and improve efficiency. Masu.
AR utilization using Microsoft HoloLens
Microsoft HoloLens is a device that is attracting attention for the use of AR in the manufacturing industry. This is an HMD equipped with technology that is closer to MR than AR, and is being used in a variety of ways, such as projecting data analyzed through a cloud platform into the real world. For example, “predictive maintenance” using Microsoft HoloLens is a solution that provides high value for many manufacturing industries.
Predictive storage means: “ Reply only when repairs are necessary by collecting data through IoT” “Improve the productivity of field service engineers” “Improve the initial response completion rate by knowing in advance where failures may occur” “Regular inspections’ ‘ This is a maintenance type that brings high productivity to the manufacturing industry due to its advantages such as “no need to stop production for maintenance”.
In addition, by projecting various information onto production equipment, it is possible to realize more advanced solutions and solve various problems faced by the modern manufacturing industry.
Vuforia Studio, provided by PTC , can convert 3D CAD models, images, videos, and IoT data into detailed AR content. If we project this into the real world through Microsoft HoloLens, we can “improve worker productivity and satisfaction,” “reduce costs caused by errors, waste, and accidents,” and “improve customer experience and competitive advantage.” You can enjoy the benefits of Why not take this opportunity to consider adopting AR technology within your company?