Developing and using mixed reality solutions

Developing and using mixed reality solutions

Developing and using mixed reality solutions

Developing and using mixed reality solutions

Mixed reality, which consists of a combination of virtual and augmented reality applications, is no longer a vision of the future, but instead an effective and viable technology. These applications are used not only by Bertrandt and our customers, but also in research, technical development, planning, production and logistics. The technology also supports activities in marketing, servicing and maintenance, plus training, education and knowledge transfer.

Mixed reality applications can be found in all of Bertrandt’s customer sectors, including industries such as automotive, aviation, machinery and plant construction, process engineering, medical technology, electronics and energy.

 

Mixed reality (MR)

The term mixed reality covers a broad spectrum of applications, some of which function in a completely virtual space, in other words a fully artificial environment containing no objects from the real world. At the other end of the spectrum are augmented reality applications that superimpose virtual objects on a real environment. These allow reality to be augmented with additional information.

We use MR to carry out virtual investigations of products in the very early stages of development. Using digital engineering drawings and three-dimensional representations, we can influence the product development process several years before the first prototypes of the new products are created.

Virtual reality (VR)

Virtual reality (VR) is the term used to describe a computer-generated world based on a real-time engine which offers an unprecedented degree of realism. Immersion is the feeling you have when you perceive a virtual environment as being real. The highly immersive experience offered by VR solutions makes them much more realistic and more versatile than traditional methods of visual representation such as photography. When products change, we can respond more interactively, flexibly and efficiently and also faster, which leads to significant cost reductions.

We develop software applications for VR headsets which open up completely new opportunities, for example in marketing and sales, but also in development, production and maintenance. Products with a different look and different levels of equipment and materials can easily be presented in a variety of environments to observers who, as a result, feel immersed in the virtual world. We cover all the stages of the process from the initial idea and the design through to the interactive application with a real-life look and feel. We also provide the entire range of visualisation and graphics services.

Augmented reality (AR)

Augmented reality (AR) involves enhancing reality with virtual content in the form of text, 3D objects and illustrations. We use AR to develop innovative ways of presenting information by integrating three-dimensional virtual objects into a real environment. These objects can be displayed on headsets such as the Microsoft HoloLens or on smartphones and tablets. They range from simple to complex technical solutions.

Bertrandt is familiar with all the conventional AR libraries. We also have our own image processing team. In addition, we have an in-depth understanding of the majority of our customers’ technical processes, which allows us to develop constructive applications that bring genuine added value. Important collaborations, such as our partnership with Microsoft for example, complement our technical expertise perfectly.

Bertrandt’s VR and AR services

  • Innovation management and project development from the original stimulus through to the project idea, the concept and the implementation
  • Support that goes beyond the technical implementation process and includes additional offerings such as coaching, consulting, analyses, trend scouting, creative methods, workshops and moderation
  • Consultancy in the areas of funding management and financing opportunities
  • Expertise across the entire technological field, from 3D visualisation to the development of mixed reality applications

Using the technologies described above, we enhance conventional development processes with new interaction methods.

By visualising simulated data, we can add material properties or physical characteristics to 3D models. Modified parameters can be evaluated and the results presented in a tangible and visible form in the virtual space.

  • For example, we can represent the results of compute-intensive fluid simulations, including thermal and aerodynamic processes.
  • We run installation space tests using different scenarios long before the components are actually installed.
  • Machines and robots can be positioned in factory buildings that do not yet exist as part of the planning process.
  • We can visualise process industry plants complete with production facilities to allow decisions to be made about different piping systems, for example.
  • We can also run virtual ergonomics studies and lighting simulations without physical models in the early stages of development.

Web configurators are already using virtual data in their presentations rather than photos. In showrooms, VR headsets can provide new worlds of experience for customers and products can be presented before the production process has been completed.

  • Three-dimensional views allow customers to experience different levels of equipment that are not available on the premises.
  • Visualisations give an impression of the impact and interaction of different colour and material options.
  • Dealers can use AR applications in combination with real vehicles to demonstrate functions or equipment levels.

Bertrandt creates AR applications that simplify complex servicing and maintenance tasks.

  • Service engineers who are standing in front of a machine can use headsets which show demonstrations of how to fit spare parts or superimpose additional information about individual components.
  • Workshops can investigate faults in real vehicles without having to remove parts in advance.
  • Repairs can be carried out remotely by displaying instructions about the specific case and providing virtual guidance during the repair process.

We produce visualisation applications for aftersales teams which allow employees to learn independently without the need for an instructor. These applications can present conventional workshop manuals in a visualised form to make assembly and servicing processes easier to understand.

Examples of applications

  • Employees use VR applications to gain an understanding of assembly instructions.
  • Service engineers learn how to carry out repairs in advance using a virtual application before working on real objects.
  • AR applications can also be used in museums and exhibitions to provide visitors with information. Curators and exhibitors can easily edit the content.

Major advances have been made in recent years in VR technology and in the quality of the visualisations. We are making full use of our experience of digital data, including digital twins, for example, across a wide range of internal and customer projects and meeting customers’ requirements by deploying the very latest technology.

  • We are constantly increasing the integration of data, reducing set-up times and improving the transfer of results from MR applications.
  • To improve real-time interactions, we are continuously improving the performance and the visualisation quality of our applications.

One important factor in the increasing spread of MR applications is the process of introducing employees to working with virtual worlds. Where teams do not yet have any experience of virtual reality or take a sceptical view of it, a positive user experience, intuitive user interfaces and a carefully planned introduction process are essential. We cover every aspect of these issues from the initial concept to bringing MR applications into your company.