Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are still in the early stages of development, but companies are exploring applications of it and moving beyond pilot projects. VR technology allows viewers to be immersed in an immersive world where they can interact with digital objects through a headset.
VR is a more advanced version of AR technology that can be used when safety is the primary concern. Virtual reality (VR) technology allows users to move around a virtual environment without moving their eyes or hands. Augmented reality technology enables people to see objects in a new way, using special industrial AR glasses or headsets. Augmented reality technology also allows people to interact with digital objects, such as virtual 3-D product models or real-time video feeds for inspection. Such technology is used in many industries, including healthcare, education, manufacturing, and aviation.
This type of remote access is similar to what we see on the moon and other distant locations, but it allows users to feel at the scene. That’s because they can interact with digital objects through a headset that fits over the eye and is worn on the user’s head like goggles or sunglasses. This access method allows users to stay present in the environment while interacting with digital objects and doesn’t require them to touch anything physical.
Augmented reality and virtual reality digitalize processes in the oil & gas industry, one of the major powers of the energy sector, solving many of the core challenges.
Oil and gas companies are already looking at the potential of virtual reality (VR) technology to solve some of the challenges they face in their drilling operations. For instance, a team at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), has developed a VR headset that allows users to explore remote areas onshore, without physically moving their eyes or hands. The headset uses a camera system that tracks movement in space around the user so that they can move freely without being restricted by physical limitations. The VR technology is currently being tested by scientists investigating earthquake hazards in California’s San Andreas Fault. The UCLA team is also working with oil and gas organizations such as Chevron, ExxonMobil, and ConocoPhillips to help them test the effect of VR technology on drilling operations. This type of research will enable companies to learn more about how well their current technologies work in virtual reality environments before investing resources into developing new technologies for AR applications or developing existing technologies for VR applications. One way companies are using VR technology is through head-mounted displays (HMDs), which allow users to see holographic images projected inside headsets instead of through flat screens that are small enough to fit over users’ heads like glasses or goggles worn by people who watch TV shows or movies at home or work—and also prevent users from touching any physical objects while wearing HMDs.
The Future of Augmented Reality in the Oil and Gas Industry
The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released a report that found that AR/VR technology can help increase the accuracy of oil field seismic data. With the ability to see an image in 3D utilizing an HMD, researchers can use this technology to help improve their data interpretation. Technology provides additional information such as a 3D rendering of what they see on the surface of an oil field. The report also found that VR environments have an impact on the performance of real-world geological data during seismic testing. This has led some researchers to believe that AR/VR systems could be used with other geophysical tools such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
In January 2019, Oil Search announced it would begin using augmented reality (AR) for seismic imaging in its exploration and appraisal operations in North America. Oil Search will use its VR system developed by General Electric (GE) called GE-Vive, which was first introduced at GE’s 2017 annual general meeting in Redondo Beach, CA. Oil Search will also use its existing handheld Geovision systems developed by GE to collect data from the ground during seismic testing. These handheld Geovision systems are similar to those used by geologists who conduct oilfield research at drilling sites around the world.
Augmented reality platforms can successfully tackle challenges faced by the oil and gas industry. Employing AR helps reduce occupational hazards, operational downtimes, and various flow disruptions. As a result, the augmented reality oil and gas industry is a tool for improving business performance and continuity.