Detecting sight and sound in the field comes with time and experience and as the new generation of technicians steps up, manufacturing, plant management cannot rely on half-baked skills. To bridge this gap and accomplish productivity, efficiency, improvements in safety, organizations now need to provide tools to field technicians like Augmented reality tool and accelerate skill development.
Augmented reality is creating buzz and is transforming how manufacturers work. It is delivering practical value to the business when a proper strategy is applied. As manufacturing companies adopt augmented reality tools, they should be focusing on integrating AR technology with their existing plant and operations technology systems.
This provides three benefits :
- Situational awareness
- IoT data integration
- Live remote assistance
Building a strategy around these three elements will help organizations achieve faster returns on investment along with easy implementation.
Situational awareness with AR technology
Where to find devices and identifying correct assets after finding out the location. With two issues that cause distress among new incumbent workers. Industrial sites have thousands of devices scattered around in the large space. Adding to this complication of asset identification, big facilities have several similar devices adjacent to each other. An inexperienced person can make mistakes and disable the wrong equipment.
Augmented reality remote assistance app helps by building a situational awareness for field workers to quickly locate malfunctioning equipment and resolve the issue. Advanced AR technology helps manufacturers by building functionality that helps in improving operations and maintenance. It helps the field personnel to visually map all the elements in the plant and easily locate them, identify and resolve issues.
The navigation tools built with augmented reality help them to locate assets using their mobile devices. They can see the devices and see overlays that identify devices by name. It also provide their intuitive health status.
Delivering relevant IoT data integration
It is pivotal for AR technology to be integrated with OT data systems to deliver maximum value to the business as an asset performance platform, for example. However, the manual engineering of that integration can be expensive. Organizations should prioritize native integration solutions that ease the implementation and save on the cost.
This integration provides instant relevant data of specific assets to field workers. Using a mobile device, field workers can tap the asset to check its catalog and process data, documentation and maintenance history. With this immediate access to all the relevant data of the asset, field technicians can avoid multiple trips for maintenance. This simplifies routine maintenance, reduces outage lengths and efficiently improves fixing issues.
This also helps to level up the skills of the new technicians ensuring that they have all the required tools for fast troubleshooting of problems and maintenance.
Enabling and enhancing live remote assistance
Technicians can run into problems they cannot solve even when they are equipped with the right tools and resources. When a technician cannot solve a problem, the issue is escalated to an experienced technician. Waiting for these high demanded engineers often causes delays
AR solves this problem by removing the need for an experienced technician to travel to the site.
It enables multiple technicians from anywhere in the world to work together and solve the issue quickly. Using augmented reality remote assistance, technicians can see what the field technician is seeing through live screen sharing annotations. They can provide assistance through text or voice messages and link additional resources. This reduces asset downtime leading to fast ROI on AR technology.
AR technology has immense potential to increase the productivity of workers while also ensuring safety, reducing repair times and cost. Using the right augmented reality tool manufacturers can improve collaboration, support, training and knowledge sharing with field technicians to make the best decisions.
AR technology creates an infrastructure that enables experienced technicians to pass their knowledge to future generations for successful operations and sustainability.