Just last year Lenovo showed us a little more on its commercial (Virtual Reality) VR platform at Tech World 2017. A technician working on a jet engine took center stage, wearing a VR headset that displayed information overlays. This helped the tech diagnose issues and consult with colleagues. The collaboration unfolded in real time with unprecedented ease and precision—no need to look away at a technical manual or share photos after the fact.
Now, just 15 months later, that same technology is being used to power one of China’s largest designers and manufacturers of passenger aircraft, COMAC (the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China). At the Recent Zhuhai Air Show in China, the two companies entered an agreement to help improve the quality and efficiency of commercial aircraft manufacturing in China. The move could potentially lead to cost savings in manufacturing.
“The combination of our two great teams will make huge contributions to artificial reality as it’s used in the aircraft industry,” said Daryl Cromer, vice president of Lenovo Research. “Lenovo believes what we do here today will improve manufacturing efficiency, improve quality, and reduce costs. Our partnership will be the example that companies everywhere look to, to realize just what truly is possible in an era of smart manufacturing, smart vertical transformation, and Smart IoT.”
Moving forward, both companies will be looking to see how VR could be applied to commercial aircraft manufacturing, jointly develop a VR Lab, develop new applications, and establish a set of industrial standards regarding the integration of VR with commercial aircraft manufacturing.
It is likely that VR technology will see application in aircraft cable connector assembly, functional testing, installation inspection of complex structural parts and system parts, as well as remote assistance for factory equipment maintenance.
“Lenovo’s new AR technology is an ideal solution to help build our Intelligence Manufacturing Park, ensure quality control, and contribute to product development,” said Yu Zeming, the GM of COMAC Shanghai Aircraft Manufacturing. “It has been quite fulfilling for our team to collaborate with Lenovo Research to demonstrate how our cloud, data, and AI technology can make their way into commercial aircraft and bring benefits to our customers.”