Fugro | Remote expert

Industry: Offshore
Technology: Augmented Reality
Use: Remote expert

The client

Fugro is a Geo-data specialist who collects advanced information about the subsurface and structures. This data is used, for example, for the construction of offshore wind farms or large infrastructure projects. The company is active worldwide and has more than 30 ships in service.

Fugro often operates in remote locations and sometimes under extreme weather conditions. Projects can take a long time. During this time, specialized personnel should be on board for both operation and troubleshooting.

The question

Placing specialists on board of a ship means that they cannot be of service on other ships. Fugro has asked VR Owl to help develop a remote support solution that allows them to connect experts with remote operations.

The challenges

The first challenge was the remote locations where Fugro operates (mostly at sea) where access to the internet or telephone is limited. 

The second challenge related to the integration into the own IT infrastructure where user management and security were important. 

Finally, strict safety rules apply in the fields where Fugro operates. The remote expert solution, in particular the hardware, had to meet this requirement.

 

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The solution

Remote Expert

Is a software solution that allows Fugro to share real-time audio and video via a satellite internet connection. The operator uses an application on an AR headset while the expert logs in via a web-based environment.

Always connected

Remote Expert automatically switches the quality of the connection to the optimal settings. This way, a connection is always possible, even when there is little bandwidth available. The connection quality can also be managed by the user himself.

The Result

The use of Remote Expert has several advantages for Fugro; faster decision-making, more efficient and safer use of resources, with a lower environmental impact. 

Faster decision making

Remote Expert connects employees and enables clients to see what ensures faster decision making.

More efficient deployment of personnel
By spreading the expertise ‘on-demand’ over the activities, the personnel is more efficient.

Safety
Fewer personnel in an unsafe operational environment such as at sea, increases the safety of Fugro employees and its customers. In addition, Remote Expert can be used in emergencies.

Less environmental impact
Less staff travel between locations and more efficient operations means a reduced impact on the environment.

Faster project delivery
Because Fugro is able to make critical decisions from a distance faster, such as a defect in the engine room, projects can be delivered faster and more efficiently.




Functionalities
The expert observes via a camera on the AR headset, so that he sees the same image as the operator. The expert can then give instructions via speech thanks to the built-in (noise cancelling) audio functions.

The AR headset also has a screen for the operator. The expert can place so-called markers on this that, for example, highlight a part or process.

Integration & Analytics

A cloud version has been developed for Fugro that is integrated into its own IT environment. This gives the organization control over user rights and network security. In addition, Remote Expert has an analytics function that provides insight into the number of calls, among other things.

The hardware

In this case we worked together with our partner RealWear and used their HMT-1. This AR headset is hands-free to operate and made for the industry; sturdy, reliable and waterproof. In addition, the RealWear HMT-1 is easy to combine with safety equipment such as helmets and glasses. 

The delivery

A setup with two Playseats where users wear VR headsets. One of the Playseats and headsets is connected to a remote controlled car with a 4G connection, the other one is connected to a 5G connection. The cars have mounted cameras which send live video to the headsets. Players can use steering inputs to steer the remote controlled cars around a race track. The first to make it around the track wins the race.

Ready to create impact?

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