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3 Exciting Examples Of Augmented Reality For Industrial Maintenance Tasks

Augmented reality (AR) is transforming the manufacturing industry by serving as a “just-in-time” training tool that overlays 3D images, text, and other critical information onto the real world. 

From decreasing production errors to reducing safety incidents, AR has proven to be a valuable training resource that employees in manufacturing and industrial roles can rely on. 

Check out 3 real-world examples of using AR for industrial maintenance tasks:

  1. Boeing Uses Augmented Reality For Electrical Wiring Training
  2. DHL Uses Augmented Reality To Assist In The Picking Process
  3. Bosch Uses Augmented Reality For Automotive Workshops

What if your learners could view the internal components of an engine without breaking it apart? Or what if they could reach an expert in real-time to troubleshoot an equipment problem?

Well, now your employees can with augmented reality! 

At Roundtable Learning, our team of experts helps organizations in the manufacturing and supply chain space develop custom training solutions with immersive learning technologies, including VR and AR. Through these programs, we’ve seen organizations increase efficiency, drive productivity, and reduce errors. 

This article will explore the benefits of AR for industrial maintenance applications and provide 3 real-life examples of AR used in manufacturing. 

What Are The Benefits Of Augmented Reality For Industrial Maintenance Applications?

Augmented reality (AR) training adds interactive, digital elements to a live, real-world environment through a tablet, phone, or headset. From technical skills training to onboarding and more, AR is an interactive tool that provides learners with a dynamic alternative to traditional classroom learning. 

In the context of industrial maintenance applications, AR comes with the following benefits:

  • Avoids jeopardizing machinery, tools, etc. by simulating equipment and reinforcing step-by-step processes
  • Decreases errors in production by allowing learners to conduct equipment and quality checks
  • Reduces safety hazards by allowing employees to overlay safety information related to a specific piece of machinery
  • Helps to quickly resolve issues in-the-moment by collaborating with experts in real-time from remote locations

The possibilities are limitless with AR training, as organizations can create interactive 3D models of equipment, program 2D text, images, and videos within an AR application, provide step-by-step instructions on processes, and so much more. 

Listen To Our Exclusive Podcast Feature: How Virtual Reality Gear is Changing Manufacturing

4 Ways You Can Use Augmented Reality For Industrial Maintenance Tasks

There are many unique applications of AR for industrial maintenance tasks, including:

  1. Equipment maintenance and repair – With AR, organizations can have their custom equipment replicated in the form of 3D models. Learners can then interact with these 3D models of equipment by increasing and decreasing their size, rotating the object, and viewing the internal structure. 
  2. Remote assistance from experts – Through wearable AR solutions, including RealWear and Hololens 2, learners can virtually connect with equipment and process experts to receive real-time instruction. 
  3. Service inspection and quality checks – With AR, learners can practice various service inspection tasks, including emergency shutdowns of equipment, leak testing, equipment replacement, and more. 
  4. Compliance checklist – Through overlaid text, images, and videos, AR elevates traditional, click-through compliance training by giving learners a hands-on compliance training experience. 

3 Real-Life Augmented Reality Use Cases For Industrial Maintenance

Boeing Uses Augmented Reality For Electrical Wiring Training

With the increasing complexity of objects and their wiring information, Boeing implemented an AR program to train automotive employees on object identification and complex repair processes. 

Throughout this AR activity, learners gain critical, just-in-time information regarding various automotive objects and processes, including: 

  • Identifying fault sources and instructions for repairs
  • Practicing complex repair procedures
  • Overlaying detailed 3D diagrams of various automotive objects

This activity made automotive workshop processes significantly faster, all while minimizing the number of mistakes that technicians made. 

DHL Uses Augmented Reality To Assist In The Picking Process

In a pilot project, DHL introduced an AR training activity for their warehouse employees to assist with the picking process. This activity replaced the need for a paper pick list and hand-held scanners.

By putting on wearable AR glasses, DHL warehouse employees could view overlaid information regarding the picking process, including:

  • Product location within the warehouse
  • The quantity of the product
  • Detailed information about the aisle’s stock

This pilot AR program resulted in a 25% performance increase during the picking process, allowing warehouse employees to more successfully and efficiently complete order picking.

Bosch Uses Augmented Reality For Automotive Workshops

To more efficiently complete service repair tasks, Bosch implemented an AR training activity for workshop technicians through the use of tablets and Microsoft Hololens 2 glasses. 

From intricate repair processes to training new automotive employees, Bosch used this AR activity to allow learners to:

  • Receive visual guidance on object identification (e.g. 3D diagrams, on-screen text, charts, etc.)
  • View step-by-step instructions applicable to various car models
  • Use their Hololens 2 headset to interact with digital objects

This AR activity successfully cut back on the time needed for automotive technicians to complete tasks, as well as decreased the number of errors made by technicians by 15%

Could Augmented Reality Benefit Your Industrial Maintenance Training?

This article has reviewed the unique benefits that AR brings to training in manufacturing, as well as 3 real-world examples of AR for industrial maintenance tasks. 

Looking to learn more about AR technology and how it could fit in your training program? Reach out to one of our experts today or check out more of our resources on all things AR.

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