Ford Virtual Reality Lab Improves Global Creation Process
Ford has become the first automaker to make used of a new virtual reality lab technology, which is enabling its engineers and designers all around the globe to work hand-in-hand on vehicles in real time. Allowing for simultaneous input and greater co-creation allows for a more streamlined creation process and, ultimately, a more uniform standard of quality in Ford’s vehicles around the world.
What’s more, the ultrahigh definition virtual workspace has led to improvements in vehicles already being driven by Ford’s customers, including the new Ford Fusion and Mustang. In the case of the Fusion, engineers and designers worked together in the Ford virtual reality lab to determine where sideview mirrors would be best placed in order to achieve optimal visibility without conflicting with vehicle design. Global cooperation ended in the determination that door-mounted sideview mirrors would be ideal; this effort also led to the inclusion of the Fusion’s ultrathin LED center brake light.
“We now have Ford designers and engineers around the world working together virtually – inside and side-by-side – on the same product,” said Elizabeth Baron, Ford virtual reality and advanced visualization technical specialist, in the company’s press release. “By using this technology, designers and engineers can quickly transition from one car design proposal to another, and they can study and identify which is the best option.”
The Ford virtual reality lab is a new addition to Ford’s innovative Immersion Lab, which the automaker began in 2006. The Immersion Lab was intended to let Ford designers and engineers test styling, craftsmanship, and ergonomic options through a more cost- and time-efficient virtual manner. Other upgrades include a 4k resolution “powerwall” display screen for virtual vehicle evaluation, Programmable Vehicle Model for better visualization, and Cave Automated Virtual Environment.
Take a sneak peak at the work being done in the Ford Virtual Reality Lab in our gallery below: