Augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) have already proven their worth when it comes to productivity in busy environments with complex machinery, small, complicated devices or even the surgery room, and Renault Trucks have been working with virtual reality (VR) technology in its design and production process for years, but now they’re looking to integrate AR and MR technologies into its production process and quality control processes. A Eureka Magazine report tells us that a team of 20 employees at Renault Trucks’ Lyon engine site in France have been working to make a prototype for using MR to help control engine quality.

Using Immersion and supported by the company, the team created a mixed reality application which takes them over the process of designing a car, from inception to prototype. Bertrand Félix is the Renault Trucks engineer leading the project, and he hopes the new technology will modernise and simplify the jobs employees at the Lyon site do every day; “In practice, quality control operators will wear Microsoft HoloLens smartglasses in which all the digitalised engine parts will be integrated.

[Using] the glasses and mixed reality interface, operators will see decision-making instructions that will guide them through the most complex control operations. At the moment, operators working on control points are still using paper instructions.” The technology is particularly helpful with complicated engines, allowing users to “look through” the engines, identify each part, and navigate their way through the complicated machinery.

Each part has a digital user interface (UI) superimposed over it, so they can all be viewable individually in MR, allowing users to identify issues in the quality control stages much more easily. “In addition to the expertise we have been acquiring in virtual reality since 1994, our added value lies in our multi-disciplinary team that really understands needs and uses in order to offer our customers a global experience”, explained Jean-Baptiste de la Rivière, R&D and innovation director at Immersion.

“With Renault Trucks, we have designed and developed a tool that is perfectly suited to the requirements of the factory, which can be integrated into the manufacturer’s industrial processes.” MR, AR and VR are all finding new ways to automate and simplify complex tasks like this, and for all of the latest of new and interesting ways these technologies are being used, make sure to keep reading VRFocus. Read more from…

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