The industry’s most realistic welding simulator
AugmentedArc provides a simulation that closely resembles live arc welding—without using an actual arc or consumables.
The AugmentedArc system improves the efficiency and economy of classroom education with “augmented reality” technology. Users wear a specially designed helmet that shows them images of the real world, augmented with computer-generated images of metal workpieces, weld arcs and weld beads. The result is a simulation that closely resembles live-arc welding—without using an actual arc or consuming wire, shielding gas or coupons.
The system provides an engaging and immersive student experience and allows instructors to make more effective use of their time. Users of any skill level can start working with the system almost immediately. AugmentedArc offers intuitive, easy-to-understand setup assistance and objective, post-weld feedback to help users quickly gain experience and develop proper welding techniques in SMAW, GMAW, FCAW and GTAW processes.
How does it work?
- Instructors use the system’s Teacher Software to develop a curriculum of process theory, quizzes, welding exercises, as well as monitor student performance and create progress reports.
- To complete an assignment, students wear a specially designed welding helmet that contains an external optical sensor, which captures images of coded devices and coupons and sends them to the AugmentedArc system’s computer.
- The system’s computer generates three-dimensional images of metal workpieces, weld arcs and weld beads and overlays them onto the real-world environment.
- Inside the helmet, the augmented reality environment appears on a specially designed heads-up display panel, precisely showing the user’s proximity to and interaction with the workpieces and welding gun/torch.
- The same images also appear on a second display panel in the system’s computer case. Additionally, realistic arc sounds feed through speakers located in the helmet.
- The AugmentedArc system continuously monitors the user’s performance, measuring adherence to predetermined or custom welding parameters, including travel speed, gun/torch angles, distance, aim, contact-tip-to-work (GMAW/FCAW only) and arc length, rod work angle and rod travel angle (GTAW/SMAW).
- The helmet’s heads-up display delivers immediate visual feedback on the user’s performance, providing confirmation when parameters are being maintained and alerts when they are exceeded. The same images also appear on the second display panel in the system’s computer case.
- When the welding exercise is complete, an analysis screen provides feedback on the user’s performance in the form of scores and graphs. Video of the welding exercise is also recorded and made available for later playback, allowing instructors to evaluate students’ performance.
Augmented Reality Welding Mask
With the helmet in place, the student can begin to interact with a mixed reality world: part virtual and part real. They can see their hands and surroundings. But when viewing the workpiece through the mask, the patterns printed on the physical workpiece transform into what appears to be very realistic pieces of steel. When a welding torch is correctly applied to the various joints, sparks will fl y and a red-hot bead will appear.
The helmet uses two forward facing cameras to view the workpiece. Sophisticated software interprets the symbols on the workpieces and generates the photorealistic image seen by the student and bystanders.
Because the Miller AugmentedArc Reality Welding Trainer is equipped with real welding implements, students quickly become familiar with the devices’ look and feel. Learning to maintain correct and consistent angle, distance, and speed while grappling with hoses and electrical cables are critical skills.
The Miller AugmentedArc Reality Welding Trainer features five workpieces, each representing a typical welding scenario. The helmet-mounted cameras capture the patterns on the workpieces and the sophisticated software interprets the patterns and displays photorealistic video for the student and instructor.
The Miller AugmentedArc Reality Welding Trainer contains a powerful processor that facilitates delivery of course theory and practice instruction. All virtual instruction can take place at the welding station, eliminating the need for additional computers. Instructional and practice exercises are tied directly to objective performance analysis making the instructor’s job easier.