Wiley plays with the future reality of facility design

07 January 2013

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Wiley is currently exploring how Augmented Reality (AR) can help make designing a complex facility as time and cost effective as possible while producing the most innovative and collaborative solution.

When asked how this technology could be directly used with clients, Wiley Process Engineer and resident AR enthusiast Heath Barker replied, “Our vision is for Wiley to facilitate a room full of our client’s staff, from executives to operators, and let them design their plant the way they like.”

He added, “This highly collaborative method allows you to visually trial dozens of concept layouts during a single session by essentially just playing with the blocks. Imagine being able to devise the best ‘flow’ for your product, personnel, or both, in just one session.”

The blocks can be assigned the characteristics of any design element and the method scaled to design everything from the fit out of a single room with equipment; right up to the layout of an entire facility and the grounds it is to be built on. As demonstrated in Wiley’s AR video.

The question was then posed if there was any real advantage to working in 3D as opposed to traditional 2D drawings, Heath elaborated, “Often it is difficult to demonstrate, in 2D, the spatial dimensions of a concept, and the interactions of the elements involved. Particularly for people who don’t deal with 2D drawings all the time. The 3D modelling techniques used in AR enable everyone involved to clearly visualise and understand exactly what they are dealing with and what can be achieved in the spaces they are working with.”

Heath further explained “The beauty of this technology and technique is that anyone can be involved in the early discovery and design phase regardless of their level of technical drawing experience. This is a unique form of collaboration that can give rise to previously unimagined combinations of design possibilities.”

In conclusion, Heath reiterated, “The ultimate savings are realised when a process that would normally take 5+ weekly meetings and 100+ hours drafting options, can now potentially be worked through in a single meeting.” 

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