For the sake of being competitive in an ever-changing market, industrial companies need a redefinition of traditional design and integration of parts, equipment, and services such a redefinition allows effectively addressing the interaction between machines and operators, particularly in the area of complex production lines. In this context, enhancing ergonomics is crucial to reduce fatigue and stress of workers and increase work-place efficiency and comfort. Moreover, identifying ergonomic flaws in three-dimensional human-machine design problems (e.g., body posture, reach, visibility) at an early stage of the engineering process allows to prevent these issues at a low cost. Virtual reality (VR) is emerging as a powerful tool to improve the ergonomic assessment in the design of complex production lines. However, VR is not yet a well-consolidated practice for industrial companies, and the state-of-the-art applications are limited to simplified, isolated, and customized experiments. This work proposes the use of a virtual golden zone (VGZ) as a standard and efficient VR method for the ergonomic analysis and optimization of operator activities in manual manufacturing stations. The resulting effectiveness and benefits are highlighted through the application of the approach to a real industrial case study. Finally, the outcomes of a usability questionnaire, compiled by the professionals involved in the VR reviews, are presented to evaluate the usability of the VGZ methodology in the design process of complex production lines.

Virtual Golden Zone for Enhancing the Ergonomics of Complex Production Lines

Dammacco L.
;
Carli R.;Gattullo M.;Fiorentino M.;Dotoli M.
2023

Abstract

For the sake of being competitive in an ever-changing market, industrial companies need a redefinition of traditional design and integration of parts, equipment, and services such a redefinition allows effectively addressing the interaction between machines and operators, particularly in the area of complex production lines. In this context, enhancing ergonomics is crucial to reduce fatigue and stress of workers and increase work-place efficiency and comfort. Moreover, identifying ergonomic flaws in three-dimensional human-machine design problems (e.g., body posture, reach, visibility) at an early stage of the engineering process allows to prevent these issues at a low cost. Virtual reality (VR) is emerging as a powerful tool to improve the ergonomic assessment in the design of complex production lines. However, VR is not yet a well-consolidated practice for industrial companies, and the state-of-the-art applications are limited to simplified, isolated, and customized experiments. This work proposes the use of a virtual golden zone (VGZ) as a standard and efficient VR method for the ergonomic analysis and optimization of operator activities in manual manufacturing stations. The resulting effectiveness and benefits are highlighted through the application of the approach to a real industrial case study. Finally, the outcomes of a usability questionnaire, compiled by the professionals involved in the VR reviews, are presented to evaluate the usability of the VGZ methodology in the design process of complex production lines.
International Joint Conference on Mechanics, Design Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing, JCM 2022
978-3-031-15927-5
978-3-031-15928-2
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11589/244280
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