American tech manufacturer, Honeywell, has announced that it is using a cloud-based simulation tool that uses a combination of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) to train plant personnel on critical industrial work activities. Honeywell’s advanced training solution combines mixed reality with data analytics to create an interactive environment for on-the-job training.

It uses Microsoft’s HoloLens, the world’s first and only self-contained holographic computer, and Windows Mixed Reality headsets to simulate various scenarios for Honeywell’s C300 controller—such as primary failure and switchovers, cable and power supply failure—that train and test personnel on their skills. With as much as 50% of industrial plant personnel due to retire within the next five years, the Honeywell Connected Plant Skills Insight Immersive Competency is designed to bring new industrial workers up to speed quickly by enhancing training and delivering it in new and contemporary ways.

Youssef Mestari, program director, Honeywell Connected Plant said” Megatrends such as the aging workforce are putting increased pressure on industrial companies and their training programs, so There is a need for more creative and effective training delivered through contemporary methods such as Immersive Competency, ultimately empowering industrial workers to directly improve plant performance, uptime, reliability and safety.” Simulating specific job activities through virtual environments, which are accessed through the cloud, Honeywell’s solution offers a natural way to interact and communicate with peers or a trainer. Similar to a flight simulator, trainees can safely experience the impacts of their decisions.

This approach improves skill retention versus traditional training methods by up to 100 % and reduces the length of technical training by up to 150%, Additionally, the employees’ training progress is tracked as part of a formal competency management system. “Honeywell’s approach is a good example of a major industrial player proactively and creatively driving digital transformation, and this is the first solution that directly links industrial staff competency to plant performance by measuring the training’s effectiveness based on real outcomes.” said Lorraine Bardeen, general manager for Mixed Reality at Microsoft Honeywell’s sales reached $40 billion in 2017, including $5.6 billion from safety and productivity solutions, $14.8 billion from aerospace, $10.3 billion from performance materials and technologies, and $9.8 billion from homes and buildings technologies. Read more from…

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