ARM Institute Selects Project Team to Develop Virtual Reality Prototype for Robotic Credential Assessment in Manufacturing

Image Credit: SimInsights Inc.

ARM Institute Selects Project Team to Develop Virtual Reality Prototype for Robotic Credential Assessment in Manufacturing 

Funding Awarded to Project Designed to Help Incumbent Manufacturing Workers Earn Credentials for Industry 4.0 Roles 

January 13, 2022 – The ARM (Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing) Institute is pleased to announce the selection of a project team tasked with the development of a virtual reality (VR) prototype for assessing and credentialing advanced manufacturing workers. The purpose of this project is to demonstrate how VR and similar technology can be used to provide incumbent manufacturing workers with the ability to earn credentials based upon the knowledge, skill, and abilities (KSAs) gained through on-the-job training in a manufacturing facility incorporating robotics and automation, often referred to as Industry 4.0. 

Funding for this project was provided through the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) Manufacturing Technology (ManTech) Program and is designed to leverage the investment made by ManTech in the Open EdX learning platform.  

Highlighted below, the selected organizations will work with the ARM Institute to develop a Robotic Technician assessment test to be delivered via VR and/or similar simulation capabilities incorporating Artificial Intelligence (AI) to optimize the assessment capabilities in future versions.  

  • SimInsights Inc. will provide the virtual reality environment creation and assessment creation for the project. 
  • APT Manufacturing Solutions, Inc. will provide the real-world environment for creation in a virtual world as well as subject-matter expertise in creating the assessment within their environment. APT Manufacturing Solutions has been providing high-tech solutions to manufacturing problems for over 25 years. 
  • IBL Education will provide integration capabilities for the solution to be hosted on the Open EdX platform. 

“Many potential and current manufacturing technicians have prior KSAs that can easily be upskilled for robotics and automation. Providing a low-cost testing mechanism to validate competency level achievement in potential and current robotic and automation manufacturing employees will shorten the time to productivity for employers”, stated Linda Wood, ARM Institute Senior Certification Manager. “I am excited by the caliber of expertise collaborating with the ARM Institute as we attempt to push the limits of virtual reality to include its use for manufacturing competency assessment.”   

Image Credit: SimInsights Inc.

Rajesh Jha, Founder/CEO of SimInsights Inc. said, “It is a privilege to collaborate with the ARM Institute on this innovative project as it is aligned with our mission of teaching and assessing skills using technology. We are excited about leveraging our National Science Foundation supported R&D on HyperSkill, a virtual and augmented reality-based simulation platform for personalized manufacturing training.”  

Added Miguel Amigot II, CTO of IBL Education, “IBL Education is thrilled to partner with the ARM Institute and the Department of Defense by providing its learning ecosystem with AI and VR at scale.” 

The prototype, along with documentation on lessons learned, will be available to ARM members in the Fall of 2022.  


About the ARM Institute  

The Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute is a Manufacturing Innovation Institute (MII) funded by the Office of the Secretary of Defense under Agreement Number W911NF-17-3-0004 and is part of the Manufacturing USA® network. The ARM Institute leverages a unique, robust, and diverse ecosystem of 300+ consortium members and partners across industry, academia, and government to make robotics, autonomy, and artificial intelligence more accessible to U.S. manufacturers large and small, train and empower the manufacturing workforce, strengthen our economy and global competitiveness, and elevate national security and resilience.  Based in Pittsburgh, PA since 2017, the ARM Institute is leading the way to a future where people & robots work together to respond to our nation’s greatest challenges and to produce the world’s most desired products. For more information, visit www.arminstitute.org and follow the ARM Institute on LinkedIn and Twitter. 

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