Chloe Shakesby

Research centre network signs 'landmark' Augmented Reality tech deal

A network of research and innovation centres has taken one of the UK’s largest ever deployments of Augmented Reality (AR) technology.

The University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research has signed an agreement with PTC to implement Vuforia Expert Capture (VEC) software across its three sites in the UK.

This product allows tasks to be recorded using a wearable device and this content can then be turned into a step-by-step video guide with instructions for workers to implement at multiple sites and companies.

The agreement builds on a long-term relationship between the two organisations and comes after VEC played an integral role in remotely transferring manufacturing expertise safely to a number of new production lines supporting the build of over 13,000 ventilators for the VentilatorChallengeUK Consortium (VCUK).

Professor Rab Scott, head of digital at the University of Sheffield AMRC, commented: “Vuforia Expert Capture will be used primarily by our Factory 2050 teams to deliver upskilling and reskilling solutions for our aerospace partners, with the potential for much wider application into other sectors.

“Our involvement in VCUK gave us first-hand experience of the power of AR in helping to quickly set up new manufacturing lines safely by rapidly transferring production knowledge to different facilities.”

“It has the potential to transform future supply chains and this is something we wanted to explore in more detail by giving researchers, our existing manufacturing partners and SMEs easy access to VEC and other PTC technologies.

“We already have a number of projects where we think it will accelerate the deployment of solutions into manufacturing.”

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