Date Published: 14-05-2020 | Author: Ryan Smith
With the rise of industry 4.0, we are seeing more and more movement to smart connected factories and along with the technology in industry 4.0 we see Virtual Reality (VR) being mentioned and applied more and more. The truth about VR though is that it is nothing new it has been around for a few years now. However, the application of VR in industries is growing in use cases with technology companies and business owners alike finding new and innovative ways to apply this tech in their organizations.
In this article, we will just discuss how VR can bring an increased layer of safety to manufacturing by crossing over from the physical word to the digital world.
Factories even with all their safety measures in place are still generally hazardous areas for untrained personal to be. The opportunity for an accident occurring due to human error or a lack of safety training on the factory floor equipment can not only lead to the potential harm of the untrained employee but those around him.
So why send untrained employees on the factory floor to learn while on the job with potentially dangerous equipment? Why not rather put your trainees in a fully immersive VR simulation and bring the manufacturing environment to them?
Training employees in a virtual environment bring the opportunity to offer training aids while in training.
Have your trainees walk around the factory machines they will be handling with guided instructions on how the machine works and what the different parts are. Allow them to interact with the equipment by making the simulation environment interactive.
Another great application is hazard training. The ability to safely simulate possible equipment breakdown situations or hazardous scenarios is a step further than the standard training manual is a leap towards the age of 4.0. To replicate actual real-world hazard training is difficult but this is where VR has the potential to empower your workforce with the knowledge required to successfully and calmly disarm the situation while staying safe.
The training applications of virtual reality in the manufacturing industry offers many advantages over the older traditional methods of training. Although real-world experience is always the best, the application of VR on the factory floor training regiments does have its merits. Just like learning pilots do time in flight simulators to replicate various whether situations, why not apply the same logic to your factory floors safety training?
Even with the above we are just scratching the surface on the application of VR in manufacturing. With the emergence of connected factories, a user can blur the lines between the physical world and the digital world even further. Image walking though your factory situated in San Francisco from your head office located in California. The ability to stand and see your factory running in real time as if you were standing there at that very moment just shows how far you can take you factory into the future.