“Is this bit meant to come off?” Reduce wear and tear with VR technology

1 Jun, 2017

Some machines are hardy beasts. You can use them constantly with the minimum of maintenance, hit them, slam their doors, and they’ll keep working like a dream. Others can’t take this level of wear and tear. Parts need to be aligned in a particular way, the perfect amount of lubrication and fuel must be used, and if you move a part either too quickly or too slowly, the whole thing judders to a halt.

The people who use these machines every day know them inside and out (often quite literally), and using them becomes second nature, in a way that can make it very difficult to explain to anyone else.

Trying to explain intricate and complicated procedures in theory or with diagrams to a new employee can be incredibly time consuming and complicated. Plus it can be difficult to hold a learner’s continued attention and focus for long enough to explain many different processes or interactions.

A solution may be to allow new workers to learn by physically using the machine in question. However phrases like “jiggle the lever just enough… but not too much or you’ll break it” can confuse and intimidate a new worker, especially when faced with incredibly expensive machines. Plus those who have to use the machines every day dread an unexperienced hand damaging the tools they need to complete their work.

In order for a new employee to get the experience they need to use a machine seamlessly, the same actions often need to be practiced multiple times. On delicate machines this can add unnecessary wear and tear to its parts, and also means that the machine is out of use for the entirety of the training period.

If, however, these expensive and intricate machines were simulated in virtual reality, a new employee would be free to experiment with the machine as much as they needed, without disrupting other workers, taking the machine out of use, or causing damage. Every stage of the process can be replicated in life-like and immersive scenarios, allowing the learner to get a feel for the machine as if he were really there. Realistic feedback and reporting capabilities would ensure that only those that have mastered the virtual machine would progress to its physical counterpart, drastically reducing the likelihood of delicate pieces coming off in a novice’s hand!

If you believe your business and machinery could benefit from multi-person interactive VR scenarios, contact Immerse today.