A research team at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum is developing virtual reality (VR) technology for use by construction workers, and health and safety experts to decrease accidents at construction sites.
Use of game technology
The researchers are taking advantage of the fact that increasingly large construction project are first being built digitally via building information modelling (BIM). It is easy to then use the 3D modelling already done via BIM as a base for building a VR representation of the site.
The same technology used in games is used to make the environment as realistic as possible, and the use of VR goggles allows the wearer to interact with the environment e.g. picking up objects.
Unlike in real life, there are an unlimited number of lives for those using the VR system. Construction workers can use the VR system to interact with the project site to learn by experience where the greatest dangers and risks lie. Health and safety experts can also effectively check sites for critical areas, and plan accordingly in advance with suitable safety measures.