Virtual reality engineering involves visualization of projects using 3D modelling tools. It introduces the users directly into a computer-generated virtual environment, giving them an idea of what to expect in the field. With this technology, a field engineer can identify the potential risks and flaws in a project before implementation. So let’s get started with How Virtual Reality Helps Field Engineers Deliver Value.
How Virtual Reality (VR) Works
- Virtual reality is a trending technology that’s prominent in the gaming industry. But due to its potential, VR has proven to be a valuable asset in training.
- Today, almost every industry is adopting virtual reality in its processes, including the construction sector.
Virtual Reality in Real Estate
- When it comes to marketing in real estate, virtual reality has become an indispensable tool in the industry. This technology allows home sellers to showcase their properties through an interactive interface.
- With virtual reality, homebuyers can assess the interior features of a house they intend to buy, making the process faster and cost-effective.
Virtual Reality in Construction
- While some people perceive virtual reality as a gaming technology, it is also helpful in the construction industry.
- Construction engineers can use the technology to design buildings, train workers, and promote on-site safety standards.
- In the project design phase, engineers can showcase the building plans to their clients and customers.
- The project designers use VR headsets to visualize the simulated virtual world of a construction project.
How to Use VR Headset in Construction
- The headsets are usually linked to a smartphone or computer to transmit data. If you are using a smartphone, you can download the app for virtual reality.
- The VR app integrates well with the VR headsets, allowing engineers to visualize images in three dimensions.
Virtual reality headsets, also known as head-mounted devices (HMD), may come with additional accessories to help engineers navigate the virtual world.
- Such features include wireless controllers and sensors.
Applications of Virtual Reality in the Engineering Field
- Virtual reality offers an immersive experience to field engineers, allowing them to interact with projects virtually before implementation. Here is how VR technology has transformed operations in engineering.
Training of Field Engineers
- Virtual reality training allows engineering companies to expose employees to new working environments without harming them virtually.
- Also, VR training reduces the maintenance costs of equipment that workers might have damaged during the actual training.
- For instance, construction companies have incorporated VR training in their operations to promote the safety of workers.
- With virtual reality, workers can get exposed to great heights, confined spaces, and heavy equipment like excavators and cranes.
- In some cases, the death of workers usually results from physical training exercises. For that reason, construction engineers see virtual reality as a potential tool for reducing fatalities.
- Virtually trained workers can handle and operate physical machinery with much care.
- As an OSHA-approved technology, virtual reality is a valuable tool for promoting the safety of workers in the field. Read this blog post by Procore Technologies to get more info about OSHA safety tips and standards.
Design and Development
- As an integral part of engineering, designing helps engineers to gain insight into a project before implementing it practically.
- Most designers have invested heavily in virtual reality to help them curb complications that might arise during project implementation.
- With the help of virtual reality, construction engineers and architects can virtually get an accurate and detailed representation of a building before laying any foundation.
- When used together with 3D modelling and BIM, designers can easily tour workspaces.
- Besides modelling buildings, virtual reality has also been a ubiquitous technology in car design. Car manufacturers use this technology for prototyping when designing vehicles.
- It eliminates the need to develop physical prototypes, saving on design costs.
- Virtual reality can also be useful in pinpointing mistakes in project design. Once the field engineers have identified the potentially hazardous risks, they can record them in a punch list to correct them later.
- Designing a project can involve many people and needs a collaborative platform to accommodate all stakeholders.
- Virtual reality can allow various people with different expertise to interact in real-time on a single platform.
- With a well-established collaborative framework, designers and engineers can know every progress in an engineering project.
- That can help designers to make informed decisions, reducing complications that might arise during project implementation.
Virtual Reality Prototyping
- In the past, field engineers used to develop products from a conceptual view. They would use quantitative measures from statistical data to define product features.
- That made the production more expensive, risky, and time-consuming.
- In recent times, virtual reality prototyping has become an integral part of any design process. Engineers are using the technology to create, test, and validate projects before implementation.
- Virtual reality prototyping reduces the time it takes to complete a project, saving costs.
- With VR prototyping, designers don’t have to manufacture expensive prototypes for trial projects. Most companies have adopted VR prototyping in product testing to save on time and money.
- Such companies include Peugeot, BMW, Boeing, Jaguar, Ford, and Airbus.
- It’s apparent that virtual reality is already making a significant impact on the engineering field. Field engineers are using this valuable tool to leverage complex production processes to improve project quality and productivity.
- Virtual reality provides access to simulations that would help every stakeholder to visualize and understand projects.
- By adopting VR technology in engineering, companies can make their designs and operations more interactive.
- Since virtual reality is a potentially profitable technology, we expect more companies to adopt it. There is no doubt that VR technology is the future of engineering.
- According to Architosh, it’s estimated that the engineering industry will have devoted $4.7 billion to virtual reality by 2025.
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