FTK was project partner in the (NRW lead market) Immerse2Learn project since 2018: The Immerse2Learn ("Immersive Gamified Learning Environments for Plant and Mechanical Engineering") project (duration 2018-2021) used and further developed application-oriented digital technologies in the context of media and creative industries. Immerse2Learn brought methods used in the creative computer games industry to the domain of mechanical and plant engineering with the overall goal to realize innovative and standardized tools and contents for further training of technicians.
The use of game technologies, gamification, and interaction designs combined with integration of eLearning systems opens new sales markets for the computer games industry, especially for their creative and technical services and products. The creation of learning content is to be simplified to such an extent that at the end of the project there will be established value chains enabling the marketing of the results. Within the framework of this project, an AR/VR toolset, a software architecture, a 3D object repository, the user interface in AR and VR for the learners, as well as the authoring tools for the teachers and participating AR/VR agencies and software publishers will be developed.
Mechanical and plant engineering companies need to support their global activities with the global presence of their employees. The assembly, commissioning, and maintenance of highly efficient plants, such as packaging and filling plants, must be carried out by qualified and experienced personnel on site. Due to the globalization of markets, highly qualified employees are now active worldwide and can hardly be brought together at the same time at one place for further training and instruction for new technologies and products.
The penury of time for further training measures poses a challenge for future teaching methods, means, and communication technologies. The creation of online training with today's means is time-consuming and often difficult to achieve, as there is no direct link to the development tools for new equipment. This is where the project should start and create a standardized basis for the development of such learning content. With a direct link to creative development and design tools, learning content is to be created directly based on progressive machine and plant development. Since individual solutions are daily business in machine and plant construction, training on virtual objects offers considerable advantages. Even before the actual systems are manufactured, the personnel is ready for use and the risk of errors during assembly and commissioning is reduced.
The goal of Immerse2Learn was to reliably enable the creation of VR/AR learning materials in practice. For this purpose, standardized creative methods and tools for content creation and delivery were developed which integrate into the environment of existing tool chains.With the focus on the learning content, the integration takes place in two directions. Firstly,towards CAD systems (source for spatial environments and simulation information) and secondly, towards learning environments. For validation purposes, Immerse2Learn created a prototype scenario in the form of a virtual plant in which different competence profiles will be taught.
The project was funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Apart from FTK, the companies Nurogames GmbH and CAD Schroer GmbH were also involved as project partners.