The Virtual Reality Machine Training (VRMT) booth at the recent glasstec was one of the most popular, with people queuing to enter the stand late into the last day.

Greg Morris spoke to the company’s co-founder Tony Pawinski, who discusses how he hope VR can transform IS operator training.

The lightbulb moment came at the glasstec event in 2016. While working at the trade show, Tony Pawinski, saw the power of Virtual Reality and how delegates reacted to it. It immediately struck him how important the technology could be for a glassmaker and for IS training in particular.

“We have been working closely with VRMT for several months to develop the program, which is the first of its kind to be used by a glass manufacturer anywhere in the world,” said Trevor Phillips, Production and Engineering Director at Beatson Clark.

“Trying to learn the glass forming process from a book, or even on the shop floor, is difficult because the trainee cannot see exactly what is happening, so it takes quite a while to grasp. Because the virtual machine is highly visual the trainee becomes immersed in the program –rather like when you’re engrossed in a good movie – and it becomes easier to recall what has happened. Currently the VR program is training machine operators, but in future we can also use it to provide detailed refresher training for existing staff.”

Tony Pawinski from VRMT added: “Trevor showed great vision in the early days and immediately saw the future potential of VR for revolutionising IS training, not just for machine operators new and old but also for a whole raft of personnel who are indirectly involved with the production of glass containers.

“This includes support staff such as Karen Scholey (see case study below). Even customers can now be safely shown the complexity of glass bottle manufacturing and discuss it with more clarity. I would like to thank Trevor and Beatson Clark for their support and wish them all the best.”

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