nCircle Tech | Blogs | Virtual reality simulations powered by unity the future of the Oil and Gas Industry
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In today’s digitally connected world, it is almost impossible to image life without technology. It has become so essential to our everyday lives that even thinking about it feels like a bad dream! The introduction of tech like cloud has added to a significant increase in the number of smart devices across the globe, and this journey has only just begun.

Two tech trends that have really made a mark and impacted several other industries include Artificial Intelligence and Virtual reality. These two, especially, have moved beyond our daily lives and gone on to create massive impacts for businesses as well.

Back to the Future suddenly doesn’t seem so distant anymore! Let’s take a look at how important these two technologies are in terms of futuristic innovations:  

Virtual Reality in a nutshell:

The term virtual reality gets thrown around a lot, especially in the IT industry, but what does it really mean?

Virtual Reality (VR) means using computer technology to create simulated environments. Unlike traditional user interfaces, VR is much places the user inside an experience. No more 2D interactions with screens, we now have immersive 3D experiences where users can become part of the virtual world themselves! By simulating multiple senses including touch, sight and hearing, the computer becomes a gateway for the user to step into the artificial world.

Forbes reports that VR markets could easily cross $120 billion by 2020. There are many ways that VR is changing the world. We’re on the cusp of a revolution that will ultimately change the way we live, work and play. The industries that have benefited most from the VR revolution include health care, education, sports and entertainment.

Virtual reality is going to backtrack the world and cause a massive shift in the way we surf, shop and experience the web, thanks to the pure  imagination of human thought. Virtual Reality’s most immediately-recognizable component is the head-mounted display (HMD). Display technology can often be the biggest differentiator between immersive Virtual Reality systems and traditional user interfaces. For instance, CAVE automatic virtual environments actively display virtual content onto room-sized screens. While they are fun for people in universities and big labs, consumer and industrial wearables are the wild west. It’s not just the tech enthusiasts who use VR. Almost everyone has become used to it being around and is using it in some form of the other. It has taken the entire world by storm, and this doesn’t mean only the tech community.

With many different emerging hardware and software options, the future of wearables is unfolding but yet unknown. Concepts such as the HTC Vive Pro Eye, Oculus Quest and Playstation VR are leading the way, but there are also players like Google, Apple, Samsung, Lenovo and others who may surprise the industry with new levels of immersion and usability. The most simplistic solutions are the ones that will succeed the most

Moving beyond the traditional: Why it matters

  • Industrial growth: In the past few years, VR has directly impacted global industries on a significant scale and thanks to this new age tech, a completely new standard for customer experience has been set across the board
  • Branding: Many brands have been able to create unique user experiences supported by VR. This has helped many international brands and businesses gain recognition in the eyes of the customer
  • Engagement: There’s nothing quite as cool as the VR experience, if we’re being honest, and it’s not just us saying this, the consumers will agree. VR’s involvement has increased consumer engagement like never before

Who it affects: Industries that benefit from VR

Gaming

No surprises there. VR finds most of its usage in gaming. It is in this industry that the technology has been constantly developed and pushed forward. Wearing a VR headset, players are able to fully immerse themselves fully in the gaming experience. Every year more and more games are being released with VR capabilities. VR will also change how players interact and play physical games

Sports

VR is making waves in the sports industry as it makes viewing more enjoyable, and cheaper than paying for live match tickets. Today, some companies are bringing spectators closer to the court, field, or ring through the use of VR technology. The sports industry has been at the forefront of integrating technology into the fan experience. Going forward it is likely that more sports companies will start to integrate VR to provide a stronger connection to fans.

Healthcare

VR is now helping surgeons with complicated operations through cyber training. The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) is one of the purveyors of this technology, using a software system that simulates the emergency room management of a road accident patient.

The “RCSI VR Medical Training Sim” is a software that trains medical personnel to make quick decisions in real-time, and perform life-saving clinical procedures like a real surgeon would in an emergency room.

RCSI’s software was developed in partnership with Immersive Education VR. In 2018, the healthcare industry will continue to embrace VR and use it to train future surgeons, and help with the care of patients.

Oil and Gas

Virtual reality (VR) provides an interactive experience for oil and gas processes within a simulated environment. A geologist equipped with a VR headset or a video wall can visualize the earth’s subsurface and interpret seismic data using this technology.

When a team of geologists, geophysicists, drilling engineers, and technicians are tasked with analyzing vast acres of seismic data for selecting a drilling location, a 3D model of the subsurface can be rendered using VR for observing the terrain, undulations, and fractures in the geologic formation. It creates a virtual walkthrough of the subsurface that can guide decision-makers in evaluating the pros and cons of proceeding with drilling operations.

VR, thus, has been no less than a boon for the oil and gas industry!

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Well equipped talent is vital for any organization to thrive. Studies have shown that gamification of training leads to higher knowledge absorption and retention. Integrating AR/VR (Augmented Reality/ Virtual Reality) with your training modules can generate immersive content and increase knowledge retention considerably.

In Sectors like Oil and Gas and nuclear energy, even routine processes span several hours of dedicated work under perilous conditions. Hence, in-depth training and learning are essential for working in this sector. VR solutions can help companies to create a ‘virtually identical’ environment.

That’s exactly what we at nCircle Tech have been working on. We wanted to help our clients and the industry to overcome logistical challenges and help trainees get sharp, realistic 3D views for a better absorption of knowledge. Our solution was also aimed at creating comfortable job requirements that are otherwise controlled.

Here are the different ways it could be beneficial

Virtual tours using camera drone view in VR

This enables a drone view of the whole plant in VR within a specific height.
Similarly, an operator can get a virtual tour of a refinery and understand its layout through VR-powered training modules. This technology presents a superior alternative to images, charts, and schematics in the design and planning of different activities in the oil and gas sector. Aerial photogrammetric survey with drones: accurate, efficient, safe and low cost

A step beyond direct inspection

Direct inspection is often tedious and time consuming, Sending the personnel directly for a visual check is extremely time-consuming and also life-threatening as there are chances of meeting the hazard such as falling or even facing explosions when climbing the structures, and due to the complexity of the plant, it is difficult to access to all areas of interest. The final output is still one of low quality. Manual errors could occur on field handbooks, and to redo the survey takes an inordinate amount of time. VR tours can eradicate this challenge and make inspection much easier.

Laser scanning for precise, data optimized results

Laser scanning has limitations in measurement  as distortions and position shifts need to be counted and heterogeneous cloud density (too many points for regions close to the scanner but too few points far away) causes processing handling issues. The heavy file loads result in small volumes of processing, and the frequently occurred software errors lower the overall productivity. VR can maximise the efficiency of these processes and increase the final output as well

Description panels for every button and control boards

These buttons are a complex piece of electronics with a microprocessor that can manipulate input from sensors to help give feedback to the machine to manage itself. One such feedback could be the temperature, indicating overheating, other examples would be over/under speed and low/high oil pressure.

Canvas panel added for every button and control board which provides instructions to users about the operations of those buttons and boards, which gives less complexity and makes it user-friendly which provides the information about the buttons and control board.

First-person walkthrough inside the plant model:-

Users can walk inside the model and control themselves in VR using VR controller devices (remote or trackpad). The walkthrough inside the model through VR is something that helps the trainee have a first experience inside the model. Instead of viewing a screen in front of them, users are immersed and able to interact with 3D worlds with the VR controlled model.

Interaction with control boards of models

Users can interact with the electric board andcontrol panels in the model while walking through the model in order to see the operations performed by the buttons and control boards.

Machinery assemble or disassemble training in VR

Users can take VR training about machine parts and their assembly step by step.

All of this cumulates into the positive impact on your bottom line due to simulation of a large part of onsite training.

Our AR/VR training solutions powered with Unity 3D, can save up to 50% of your cost on onsite training and gamify your training modules; making the training sessions more interactive and immersive, that lead to higher knowledge absorption and retention! Contact us to know more!

Contact us

nCircle Tech (inCorporated in 2012) empowers passionate innovators to create impactful 3D visualization software for desktop, mobile and cloud. Our domain expertise in CAD-BIM customization driving automation with the ability to integrate advanced technologies like AI/ML and VR/AR; empowers our clients to reduce time to market and meet business goals. nCircle has a proven track record of technology consulting and advisory services for the AEC and Manufacturing industry across the globe. Our team of dedicated engineers, partner ecosystem and industry veterans are on a mission to redefine how you design and visualize.
Over the last 7+ years, the organisation has worked on more than 150 large and complex projects for 50+ customers across 15+ countries


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