Expert learning using Realwear glasses

28 April, 2021

We are always moving forth. Among other things, that means that we always find the right way to get things done, even in the most challenging of conditions. When the coronavirus pandemic forced many countries to close their borders last year, we too faced challenges. After all, we could no longer travel between plants to share knowledge and help each other out. Luckily, our colleagues at VCST found a way. They decided to start using augmented reality by wearing Realwear glasses so that we could keep working together despite being on different sides of the planet. This week, we’ll explain how we use our Realwear glasses for expert learning and next week we’ll show how we use them for trouble shooting.

 

Getting to grips with the glasses

 

As with all new technology, it has taken us some time to get to know the glasses and to use them as efficiently as possible. Luckily, the glasses are very well-equipped, making them highly suitable for use in a modern environment. Indeed, a powerful battery guarantees a long autonomy while there are also USB and memory card slots. As an added bonus, a small screen shows you which images you are transmitting or recording so that you can work as accurately as possible. Also, the glasses are compatible with conventional software such as TeamViewer or Microsoft Teams. That makes it very easy for the wearer to communicate with a colleague who is sitting behind a computer.

 

In a first stage, we decided to use these glasses for expert learning, for instance to show colleagues in other plants how to assemble and disassemble machines. In this stage, the glasses, the machine and the experts are all on one site. In concrete terms, colleagues in our Belgian Sint-Truiden plant used the glasses to record the various steps of a specific machine’s assembly in short clips. During these clips, they also explained where each part went and what the specifics or certain focus areas were when assembling a given part of the machine.

A great help for our Romanian colleagues

 

As we were restricted from travelling, these glasses were a great help in supporting our Romanian colleagues when they had to assemble machines in the Alba plant for which we recorded videos in Belgium. Indeed, we sent the clips to them in advance so that they could already acquaint themselves with the machines in question. Additionally, there was also an online training session with a Belgian expert to ask some more targeted questions. When the machines’ parts then finally arrived in Romania, the assembly process went very smoothly.

 

Moving on to the next stage

 

The second stage in our use of the Realwear glasses is trouble shooting. In this stage the machine and glasses are at the site where the machine will be used while the expert is still at home in Belgium. We will address this stage further in our upcoming article.