A pioneering new training aid using mixed reality and holographic computing technology has been introduced by global certification expert Bureau Veritas
Created in partnership with technology experts SmartDS, the SDS Mixed Reality Platform is a holographic training solution designed to support inspector training on pressure systems using Microsoft’s HoloLens MR technology via a head-mounted display unit.
The approach works by blending 3D holograms with a real-world environment through the display unit. This allows users to physically explore computer generated 3D models that are placed in their immediate surroundings. Interaction with placed objects using hand gestures, voice control or button inputs is then possible. Users can also move into the hologram, allowing trainees to have the experience of inspecting large or difficult to access equipment at minimal risk and without potentially disrupting production on-site.
Bureau Veritas partnered with SmartDS on the research and development collaboration, in a bid to integrate advanced technologies within existing training techniques. In order to create a tailored solution for Bureau Veritas’ needs, SmartDS created a bespoke platform – the SDS Mixed Reality Platform – which utilises Microsoft’s HoloLens technology with Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions for use in blended training environments and allows it to be integrated within Bureau Veritas’ existing software.
To-date, the team has estimated that this approach can reduce overall training time in this specialism from six days on site to just one day on site and one day using the SDS Mixed Reality Platform.
Rachel Rawlings, Accreditation Manager at Bureau Veritas explains: “We reached out to SmartDS to explore the applicability of Mixed Reality and holographic technology to enhance our inspector training programme in the pressure specialist discipline. Typically, trainees would be required to inspect large assets such as industrial boilers in order to complete their training; however it can be difficult to arrange access, as it requires shutting down the asset for a period of time, which can lead to costly downtime on site. Often it can also be difficult to physically gain access to the asset and if it is in good order the trainer will have to point out potential defects without the trainee actually being able to see them. These factors often hinder the training process, whereas the holographic asset based approach cuts out all the inconvenience and means the trainee can get ‘hands on’ as it were and have visibility off a myriad of potential defects conveniently, efficiently and safely. “