INSITER Augmented and Mixed Reality applications
During the application of the developed INSITER AR solution for Hogekamp Enschede the focus was on visual inspection of the MEP installation work using “hands-free” AR with the MS HoloLens. In other words, projecting the design situation of the MEP installation on the real situation within the building and enabling detailed 3D scenes evaluation. Workers on-site can visualize (based on the designed situation) in-situ which elements have e.g.
Hands-on experience on technology implementation using the Microsoft HoloLens to be attached, installed or removed with AR for the respective refurbishment activities or MEP installations.
Increasing complexity in the construction and manufacturing sector requires new solutions and usage of so called “Industry 4.0” technologies. New innovative applications and user interfaces for integrating and supporting human actors within their working environment have been developed in INSITER, allowing the merge of the virtual and the real world with its connected devices and services.
Fig. 1: INSITER HoloLens BIM-based Mixed Reality App Screenshots – On-Site Demonstration, e.g. for MEP or HVAC.
In the project, the INSITER partner Fraunhofer represented by Günther Riexinger, has concentrated their work on developing AR solutions that provide relevant data for different stakeholders on-site using Building Information Modelling (BIM)-based information. The developed AR solutions support planning processes as well as production and construction workflows with in-situ visualisation of digital planning or process data, available guidelines and measurement data. Thus, new ways of self-inspection and self-instruction can be performed concerning on-site work processes. The INSITER AR solutions can be deployed on mobile computers or wearable smart glasses as the Microsoft HoloLens.
Fig. 2: INSITER HoloLens BIM-based Mixed Reality App Screenshot – Visualising self-instruction information for BIM elements and to be installed components for DRAGADOS
The developed AR solutions demonstrate, how this technology can bring benefits for daily work on site within construction and also manufacturing environments. Errors can be prevented, quality can be improved and the overall work performance will be optimised. The application of INSITER AR can support e.g. the verification of assembly locations and placement of BIM elements. Already built-in elements and installed components can be evaluated and their correct position and assembly can be verified. A visual guidance for assembly task or comparison between the virtual model and real on-site situation can be performed, the construction validated and compliance checks supported. Providing digital BIM data in AR concerning planning, construction and assembly processes is enhancing the capabilities of any actor or stakeholder on site in an efficient and effective way.
Fig. 3: INSITER HoloLens BIM-based Mixed Reality App Screenshots – On-Site Demonstration focus on heating system with visualisation of instrumentation measurement data concerning thermal deviations and heat dispersion of heating pipe.
Fig. 4: Self-Instruction AR App Screenshot - manufacturing solution for assembly processes
There are further challenges that have to be faced, such as national and international regulations which do not yet cover the usage of AR tools on construction sites or within factories. Also the topic of health and safety issues has to be further elaborated to ensure the applicability of AR.
With the developed solutions, human workers in the production and construction environment of the future are supported with new ways of interactive planning, instruction and inspection capabilities. The developments in this field have the capability to transform our work environment and daily process as well as the use of hardware devices on-site and off-site.
Günther Riexinger studied Mechanical Engineering at the University of Stuttgart and is a researcher and project manager at Fraunhofer IPA in the department of “Factory Planning and Production Management”. His main competences are in the fields of production process planning, modelling, visualisation, simulation and optimisation as well as the design and development of engineering applications and services. He has several years of experience as project manager for Fraunhofer IPA in the realisation of European and collaborative projects.