Applying web-based VR technologies to support design and manufacturing
AbstractVirtual Reality (VR) has been applied to a wide range of industrial applications for enhanced visualization, evaluation and interactive virtual operations. Virtual Design and Manufacturing (VDM) makes VR no longer state-of-the art but rather innovative technology to support modem industry by providing interactive simulation environments to reduce risk, cost and time in the product development. With the rapid growth of network technology and the development of Web-based VR techniques, there is a potential opportunity to extend low-cost VR applications and distributed systems though the Web for eservice. The aim of this research project is to propose an approach to applying Web-based VR technologies to support design and manufacturing applications in Networked Virtual Environments (Net-VEs). This thesis proposes a costeffective approach to applying Web-based VR to support collaborative design and manufacturing via the Internet. Based on the proposed approach, a distributed VR system has been designed and developed by the author using VRML. Furthermore, a prototype software system -- the distributed VRMLbased Factory Layout Simulator (VFLS) for factory layout applications has been successfully developed and implemented as a demonstrator to validate the viability of the proposed approach and the usability of distributed VR system. It is capable of aiding multiple users, especially SMEs to carry out engineering activities in a networked virtual environment at lower cost and in less time, as well as, integrating with database and information systems, sharing design and manufacturing resources through the WWW at reduced cost. It is believed that such a sharing virtual environment based upon WWW will allow industries to utilise VR sufficiently and cost-effectively for maximum impact to improve the competitiveness.
PublisherUniversity of Wolverhampton
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the University of Wolverhampton for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy
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