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Digital twin: operating material container of the Federal Armed Forces

BWI-Container mit VR-Brille

The innovation department innoX of BWI GmbH and TriCAT GmbH have experimentally tested the possibility of a virtual 3D training, on the training subject “operating material container”, together with users of the Federal Armed Forces. The development period was from February to June 2021. Video BWI IT

Situation – limiting educational oppurtunity

The (laboratory) containers are used internationally and are therefore a valuable and rare training resource for the German Armed Forces. Only one container is available for training purposes at the Air Force Technical Training Center North. If this container, which is highly frequented for training, is broken, training on the real object can at times no longer be carried out at all.

Idea – virtual learning environment with digital twin

To solve these problems, the container was to be recreated as a digital twin using VR technology. The digital container twin was to enable realistic and immersive training without physical limitations, independent of location and in many cases in parallel by different teams or individuals.

The focus of the experiment was on the “commissioning” training phase. The technical service regulations of the German Federal Armed Forces regulate fixed successive work steps that must be carried out by the responsible persons in the prescribed sequence on the container.

Access – Devices

The experiment allows access to the virtual 3D container with VR (head-mounted display) glasses or via standard PCs using a mouse and keyboard. Regardless of how the protagonists joined the 3D learning environment, everyone can interact simultaneously on and in the digitalized container. Non-VR users move around the TriCAT spaces® 3D learning and working environment on standard IT hardware internal to the Federal Armed Forces.

Digital Twin & 3D learning environment

With the help of the learning world, presence-like teaching can be carried out in classrooms that can be scaled as required, including the practical components. The solution required for this was provided by TriCAT GmbH. The development part of the 3D twin was done by a team of graphic designers and developers on the side of TriCAT GmbH as well as by specialists of the German Armed Forces. Initial steps have already been taken to implement artificial intelligence-based tutors.

Result experiment

The joint experiment by the German Armed Forces, BWI and TriCAT was able to successfully demonstrate in a random sample that training content previously conducted exclusively in face-to-face classes can be taught virtually without any loss in knowledge transfer.

The 3D learning environment can be hosted with its own infrastructure. 3D models can be designed and functionally prepared for virtual training. Training can be conducted with dislocated participants, allowing direct exchange between participants.

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