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There may not be a greater tool for engineers than virtual and augmented reality technology. In the design and manufacturing of products, immersive reality has enabled engineers to get closer to their designs and interact with them on a level never experienced ever before. This has not been a recent phenomenon but thanks to the every decreasing cost and size of graphics computing devices it has reached a tipping point in great accessibility. Now engineers can come face to face with 1:1 ratio models of their creations, enable key stakeholders to join in providing constructive feedback and simulate 3d stressors on their engineering models before progressing with construction.
Immersive experiences for engineering include:
- 360 Video for Engineering
- Mobile Augmented Reality for Engineering
- Hololens Augmented Reality for Engineering
- HTC Vive Virtual Reality for Engineering
- Oculus Rift Virtual Reality for Engineering
- Oculus Go Virtual Reality for Engineering
Virtual reality will become an integral part for many engineering teams. While these applications will mainly be concerning the engineering and design sector, it is important to consider just how many other industries this will effect given that engineering plays an important role in the development of new products, machines, buildings and appliances.
Example applications of this technology include:
- Design and manufacturing of vehicles
- Marketing and showcasing of new product designs and functions
- Training the next generation of engineers through simulations and virtual case studies
- Designing model buildings overlaid with visual data to assist in construction
- Improve factory performance and efficiency by implementing new design processes making use of virtual reality.
- Demonstrating the development of a product all the way through the design cycle from initial concept all the way through to implementation
- Checking for structural weaknesses and faults that may appear during the design cycle
- Designing, planning, prototyping and construction of infrastructure projects
- Allows for products to be tested and continuously improved by developing virtual prototypes
As the technology behind virtual reality continues to improve, the environments will become more complex and detailed which will have a massive impact on the engineering sector. This will have a knock on effect for many other industries as the output of those designs begin to find themselves in the real world for us to enjoy. For now, we look to work with engineering companies to innovate and improve by adopting virtual and augmented reality technology for finding new and creative ways to train new engineers and building the products of tomorrow.