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Using Augmented Reality in Manufacturing

Haram Khan | 13 April, 2019

Due to technological advancements in recent years, augmented reality (AR) has become one of the most crucial technologies to solve operational problems in different industries. The wide use of AR is mostly attributed to the fact that it helps perform an action easily, swiftly and much more efficiently. Needless to say that AR provides results and solutions much more quickly than other technologies.

AR has opened a whole new world of opportunities in which brands like Boeing and Porsche can ensure the highest level of quality before making their products available to their customers. Let’s take a look at some of these brands and how AR has improved their manufacturing process.

Assembly Line: Boeing

Boeing decided to use Google Glass as their AR tool in the assembly process of their 787-8 freighter plane. It helped solve complex problems often faced on the assembly line. Before the introduction of AR, assembly employees had to use a laptop to see if all the wiring was assembled correctly. This took a lot of time and effort which led to efficiency losses.
With AR they have all the necessary information right before their eyes making the Boeing wire assembly process much faster and easier.
  1. Increased efficiency.
  2. Process time reduced by 25%.
  3. Reduced errors to about 0%.
  4. Improved employee satisfaction and retention.

Design: Ford Motor Company

Ford is using AR to reform their design stage. And they’re doing this by using a Microsoft HoloLens AR headset. This allows designers to see designs on a physical prototype in real scale.
  1. Increase in designer creativity.
  2. Smooth dissection making process.
  3. Better collaboration.
  4. Comments can be saved and accessed remotely by team member (teleoperation).

Guaranteeing Quality: Porsche

Porsche has been one of the frontrunners in the manufacturing industry as far as augmented reality is concerned. The company has been adopting AR for quality assurance since 2016. And it has recently built a huge engine plant in Zuffenhausen that uses robots to automate a lot of tasks. As part of their AR solution, teams use tablets to compare the initial design and the assembled car to ensure quality is up to the mark, before sending it to the client.
  1. Saves cost and time.
  2. Greater accuracy.
  3. Meet and maintain high quality standards.

Maintenance: Mitsubishi Electric

In order to reduce the hassle of consulting manuals every time, Mitsubishi Electric has been working on developing an AR technology that will allow them to maintain and service their manufacturing equipment.
  1. According to an employee working on the technology, the maintenance process will become less time consuming and less tiring.
  2. It will also pave way for introducing this technology in other areas such as water-treatment plant inspection and making electric systems.
The examples mentioned above clearly show that the manufacturing industry is well on its way to introducing AR to make its processes much smoother and efficient. But is that what you think? Do you think AR and automation is a viable option in the future?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below. Until next time!