While virtual reality takes users to another world, augmented reality is transforming the world around them. For example, a year ago, Ford purchased Microsoft Hololens headsets for its designers, which will be used to fine-tune the placement of car elements after creating a clay prototype model.
Designers will be able to create anything from headlights to bumpers and fenders by adjusting their size and placement on the body. According to Ford manager Craig Wetzel, the combination of digital grid and physical reality is one of the most promising areas of design technology.
Currently, designers create digital 3D models from drawings and then send them to engineers, who in turn, after making corrections, return them back to the designers. Wetzel explains that when engineers and designers work with a Hololens headset, the process of creating a new model becomes more efficient and produces a better result.
This method also benefits workers who are far apart from each other. For example, Chinese designers will be able to see the changes made by American engineers online.
The German auto giant Volkswagen, in turn, uses a three-dimensional virtual environment Cave Automatic Virtual Environment in its design. In it, images are projected onto several room-sized surfaces, creating a complex multidimensional model of the future car. By combining such technology with augmented reality, it will be possible to improve the machine design process at literally all stages of the process - from sketch to launch into production.