In January, the ARM Institute hosted an expert-led public ARM Exchange Webinar exploring the use of Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) for robotics training and assessment. Check out the webinar recording above!
This webinar focused on issues relative to the utilization of AR/VR for employee training and assessment to help organizations better understand the challenges, benefits, and technical advancements associated with the use of AR/VR in workforce development. Specifically, our panel of experts explored the following:
- Addressing the skills gap through AR/VR-based training
- The use of AR/VR for upskilling of incumbent workers
- Challenges to adoption of AR/VR for SMEs
- The growth of AR/VR as a training tool and implications for advanced manufacturing
The ARM Institute is actively exploring the use of Virtual Reality for robotics training. Through funding from the Department of Defense’s Manufacturing Technology (ManTech) program and in partnership with SimInsights, APT Manufacturing, and Carnegie Mellon University’s Block Center, the ARM Institute is working on a Robotics Technician Virtual Reality Assessment Prototype.
The shortage of skilled robotic technicians is a significant hurdle in the adoption of robotics and limits the growth of advanced manufacturing. Many potential and current manufacturing technicians have knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) that can easily be upskilled for robotics and automation. AR/VR provides a low-cost testing mechanism, including VR assessments, to validate competency levels will alleviate the need for classes and shorten the hiring, onboarding and time to productivity for new employees. Virtual reality for robotics leverages new technologies to get workers trained faster and more cost-effectively than ever before. Learn more about this effort here.
Beyond the Webinar – More Resources & Robotics Technician VR Assessment Whitepaper
ARM Members get exclusive access to a whitepaper on “Building a Virtual Reality-Based Robotics Skills Assessment” on the ARM Member Community. This whitepaper details the development process, pilot testing results, and lessons learned from the ARM Institute’s Robotics Technician Virtual Reality Assessment Prototype. The report also lays out a clear path to scaling up a large collection of VR-based assessments for a broad range of skills in robotics and other industries. Virtual reality for robotics training is a huge first step, but the potential growth of this training style is likely to spread to most corners of the manufacturing sector.
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Robotics Careers – What is a Robotics Technician?
The Robotics Technician is a critical entry-level role that focuses on the day-to-day maintenance of robots on the manufacturing floor. The Technician role is one of three primary robotics career pathways in manufacturing as discovered by the ARM Institute in partnership with our 380+ member organizations. These roles are outlined on the ARM Institute’s national workforce resource RoboticsCareer.org that connects education seekers, students, and employers with the resources needed to address the manufacturing skills gap and learn more about robotics in manufacturing.
Meet our Panel of ARM Member Experts:
Education Program Manager, Universal Robots
Based in Columbus, Ohio, Corey Adams has nearly 10 years in industrial automation industry experience. He has worked in business development with Universal Robots for two years, and now specializes in Education as the educational program manager. Prior to joining Universal Robots, Corey worked in project management and technical sales for an industrial manufacturing distributor and robot integrator. He served honorably in the U.S. Coast Guard and holds MBA Degrees from Keller University in Finance and Marketing.
Founder & CEO, SimInsights
Rajesh Jha is the Founder/CEO of SimInsights Inc., a California company focused on applying XR and AI technologies for upskilling, reskilling and credentialing. SimInsights’ HyperSkill platform enables non-programmers to author, publish and evaluate VR/AR content that is AI-powered (voice and vision), cross platform (XR, web, iPad etc.) and multiplayer-enabled. SimInsights is primarily serving customers in manufacturing, healthcare and higher-education and helping them implement AI/XR with agility, effectiveness and efficiency. Prior to SimInsights, Rajesh worked at Altair (NASDAQ: ALTR) as program manager for modeling, simulation and optimization software. He holds a BSME from IIT BHU, MSME from Ohio State and MBA from UCLA.
President, AVR Connect
President of AVR Connect where we provide enterprises and education clients with 3D visualization solutions for interactive training enhanced 3D and augmented & virtual reality.
Jim previously lead Knowbase, an LMS and eLearning development company. He has been an member of the ARM Institute since 2020.
Strategic Partnerships Director, SME
Dan Sloan brings 30 years’ experience forging strategic relationships between private industry, academia, technology, and service providers for solving manufacturing’s most challenging workforce development requirements. Currently serving as Strategic Partnerships Director at SME, Dan’s priorities for accelerating the adoption of cyber physical systems and advances in Smart Manufacturing principles lead him to build and deploy collaborative and scalable solutions for elevating our industry’s labor pipeline, underserved communities, and incumbent workforce.
Mary Ellen Rich
Certification Manager, ARM Institute
Mary Ellen Rich is the Certification Manager at the ARM Institute. In this role, Mary Ellen is responsible for the ARM Endorsement program which seeks to identify, evaluate, and support quality robotics and manufacturing training programs, and connect employers with resources to grow and upskill their workforces, including efforts to use virtual reality for robotics to train new workers.
She joined the ARM Institute in 2022 and has an extensive background in developing and managing testing and certification programs. Her work in the field of credentialing spans a variety of industries including healthcare, financial services, and manufacturing.
Mary Ellen holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Pittsburgh and a Bachelor of Science degree from the Pennsylvania State University.
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.