AREA – Augmented Reality Enhanced Assembly
Unipart Manufacturing Group
March 2018 - March 2020
This explored the use of augmented reality in the context of manufacturing assembly workers required to conduct complex product assemblies (such as high performance battery packs for electric vehicles) with increased efficiency.
In these complex manufacturing assembly tasks, the operator must perform a physical action in response to a work instruction. For situations where the conventional work instruction is unavailable (e.g. it may be tacit knowledge) or where high complexity and flexibility is required (e.g. flexible production lines with bespoke, low volume products).
The aim of this Project is to develop a solution that focuses on assisting workers, improving operator efficiency and providing consistent results. The solution is expected to support a wide-range of scenarios worker in complex and flexible manufacturing would be involved in such as:
- Complex product assembly (long cycle times > 30 minutes + high complexity of parts >100)
- Flexible production lines (change worker process and task on a regular basis =/> once week)
- Bespoke products
The findings from this study supported the development and implementation of an system for operator augmentation deployed at a new battery manucaturing facility.
The following operational benefits were realized as a result of the solution implementation:
- Reduction of assembly defects to 0
- Reduction of operator health and safety risks
- Reduction on training time required to sign-off operators
- Improved process and part traceability
- Process assembly validation
- Automatic Process deviation report
2 conference papers, 3 pilots to test different technologies, 2 pilots for different processes, 5 public technology demonstrations, 1 solution implemented (from MRL 4 to MRL 9).