Virtual Reality – An Integral Part of Design Review – Metecno Oy

Virtual reality headset.

Virtual Reality Offers an Added Benefit to the Industrial Buyer

Blog 16.02.2022

Virtual reality (VR) is a modern design tool. To traditional mechanical engineering, virtual reality as a technology brings literally new dimensions.

It not only brings the machine closer to the person, but also takes the person into machine’s own environment. Virtual reality offers a more sophisticated way to see and experience a special purpose machine than just on computer screen as a traditional 3D model.

How do we create a virtual reality?

In practice, a person just steps into a room equipped with necessary hardware and puts VR glasses on his head.

Then a computer-simulated environment of the ordered machine solution appears in his field of vision, and person gets a sense of being in the same environment. In this environment, a person can go very close to the machine, walk around the whole machine and even peek inside of it.

The virtual reality feels real

What matters is the reality of the virtual environment. With the help of VR glasses, the machine becomes real and detailed to the customer.

The customer can even see the service points located behind the door. It’s also possible to take a good look at the machine from many perspectives and test the machine’s ergonomics.

Seeing the machine in its natural size offers new, critical perspectives. For example, the input data provided by a customer may be subjected to scrutiny; does the virtual model really represent what the customer company originally needed? Is there still a need for some changes?

Many benefits to the design and manufacturing process

In virtual reality, we can test the functionality of the entire plan in real time. At its best, both the customer and the designer can perceive with VR glasses in their head in a 3D environment from the machine things that could still be further considered on the design table.

These include issues related to machine safety, maintenance or work ergonomics. The facts observed are not usually flaws. They are rather wishes for additional features or other insights that did not come to mind before the 3D environment.

Naturally, all the modification needs that we can localise in time thanks to the VR model save on manufacturing costs. The savings can be significant if the need for modification isn’t otherwise noticed until the assembly phase when some of the components to be replaced have already been ordered and possibly assembled.

A joint VR meeting also brings efficiency to communication between the manufacturer and the buyer. When we replace e-mails and video conferences by reviewing the material together in the same room, the certainty of agreement on technical requirements is even stronger.

Lightweight version of the digital twin

The VR glasses offer an environment that a customer may consider as a lightweight version of the digital twin, but it does not diminish the value of virtual reality.

Like the twin, virtual reality has the potential to save time, effort and money for both the buyer and the manufacturer.

We can implement the VR model review with a short lead time, plug-and-play style very quickly and effortlessly. Plus it will not trouble the customer with additional costs.

Virtual reality is always available in Metecno’s projects

It is good for the customer to be aware that the VR review is an integrated part of Metecno’s design process.

In each Metecno project we will give the customer an opportunity to use the VR model, even for multiple times. We strongly recommend that you come and test the VR model. A careful review of it ensures that the manufacturing stage can proceed without unneeded surprises.

The time spent by the buyer with the VR model, comes back as a guarantee of the success of the investment. And the tangible benefits of timely changes.