AR-supported assembly workstation
The AR-supported assembly workstation is a system for user-guided assembly of complex product configurations, which employs the technologies of augmented reality and machine learning in close combination.
In this process, a human operator can be guided along the CAD specification of a digital product configuration through the real-world process of assembly. In addition to overlaying the contours of a CAD model, the system also detects sequence of assembly and provides the worker with direct visual feedback on the correctness of the assembly step as well as the accurate positioning and orientation of a component. This not only supports the assembly process, but also enables simultaneous verification against CAD specification.
In addition, the human operator can benefit from support rendered by a remotely connected expert who assists him or her directly in a 1:1 presence on site. Using new volumetric reconstruction methods, the on-site situation can be recorded and transmitted to the remote expert. Conversely, an expert can explain the correct action to the operator in direct virtual presence and project this on the object itself, either via direct action instructions or virtual annotations. The system is scalable and can offer support to the operator via mobile and head-mounted xR (extended reality) output units.
With the AR-based assembly workstation, complex product setups can be efficiently supported and simultaneously verified against CAD specification. The system replaces the assembly instructions that are currently mostly still in physical form and which place high demands on the operator in terms of transfer competence from 2D representation into the 3D world. Thanks to a new form of remote support, even highly complex assemblies can be carried out quickly and cost-effectively. The subsequent acceptance of the assembly then takes place fully automatically and is immediately verified according to the existing CAD specification.