CLP: Powering the Future with VR

CLP

Mirum | Hong Kong |   2018-02-02
Keywords: Mobile App | VR | Interactive Project | Innovation | vr-ar-iot | innovation | mobile | interactive | industrial
words | minutes read

This most challenging part of this project is mimicking the forklift in the virtual world. This project is about detail, actual proportion, and size. From the wheels, handle, control system, and buttons.

The Ask

Serving over 6 million people across Kowloon, the New Territories, and most of the outlying islands in Hong Kong, China Light & Power (CLP) runs a power supply business that specializes in electricity generation, transmission, and distribution. As an organization committed to the balancing of its social, environmental, and economic impacts––which includes the well-being of its employees––safety is its top priority.

To fulfil various functions on a daily basis, heavy equipment like forklift trucks are operated by licensed employees who successfully measure up to CLP’s own competency standards. However, the pass rates for its internal examinations had been on a decline, as it lacked the right resources to provide ideal training. In remedying the situation, CLP was looking to create a conducive environment for trainees to gain the awareness and education they needed to excel in their evaluations.

The Idea

To understand the requirements and scale of the project, we worked closely with CLP to identify all of the limitations and issues it had with its traditional training model, retention rates, and overall training time. In aligning with the team’s expectations, we recommended a unique solution that combined virtual reality (VR) technology with a real forklift truck to allow trainees to increase their familiarity with the equipment.

Based on a standardized learning module, we built a VR forklift booth to simulate the form and functionalities of a real forklift truck. Our VR solution offers a truly immersive way for trainees to learn how to deal with dangerous situations that could occur on the job in real time. To this end, tutors can structure and programme various hypothetical scenarios via an interconnected tablet computer and app to assess a trainee’s performance. Feedback can also be given on the spot for immediate course correction.

In formulating a virtual forklift experience that could match reality as closely as possible, every detail was considered – from the sizes and proportions of the forklift truck parts designed to the corresponding action(s) assigned to each button. Besides equipping it with an actual steering wheel, pedal, and control system to handle loads, mast-tilt speed, powershift transmission and the like, we also installed our forklift booth within the frame of an actual forklift truck with a seat that vibrates according to the truck’s ‘movements’. Trainees with serious motion sickness or health problems who are not able to use the VR feature will still benefit from the same high level of training and feedback by watching their fellow trainees’ performances on the truck’s in-built monitors – using the visual alerts/indicators on-screen for further discussions.

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