Defence Secretary Inaugurates Virtual Reality Center at Goa Shipyard

January 2, 2023

Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL) is one of India’s leading shipyards and designated a “Mini-Ratna” by the Government of India. During his visit to GSL, Shri Giridhar Aramane, IAS, Defence Secretary of India, inaugurated GSL’s state-of-the-art Virtual Reality Center. This center would provide a major boost to the Indigenous warship design capabilities of GSL, providing impetus to self-reliance and a greater fillip to warship construction under the Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan of Sri Narendra Modi, Honourable Prime Minister of India.

GSL’s Industry 4.0 Initiatives

The naval shipbuilding industry has been suffering from massive project delays due to various complexities. One of the important factors includes late change requests from users who identify operational, maintenance & safety issues during the production stage or even worse, during the project acceptance stage. As leaders in warship design & construction, the GSL team very well understood these challenges. They identified that late change requests during the ship construction stage were a major reason for cost and schedule overruns. These changes further lead to out-of-order execution of tasks. Due to the high density of Naval vessels, any changes lead to changes in other areas leading to a cascading effect.

As part of its Industry 4.0 initiatives, Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL) decided to address these challenges by augmenting its warship design capabilities with Virtual Reality technology. Key objectives of the project include:

  • Improve overall design quality, leading to a higher quality of warships, that incorporate operations & maintenance workflows.
  • Reduce rework during ship construction by identifying potential issues early in the design cycle.
  • Accelerate warship construction & design approval process by replacing time-consuming line-out-inspections (LOIs) with an all-digital workflow.

The outcome is India’s most advanced Virtual Reality center with multi-site collaboration capabilities with the Directorate of Naval Design in Delhi and with other Indian Defence PSUs. This will have a tremendous impact on GSL’s capabilities to deliver warships faster, with improved quality and profitability.

The Execution

As part of a competitive tender process, VizExperts was awarded the contract for the turnkey design, development, deployment & commissioning of the VR facility. The project consisted of the following main parts:

  • Design, delivery, integration & commissioning of the VR center on a turnkey basis for Virtual prototyping of warship design models
  • Delivery & integration of VR Hardware including the following key components
    • High-resolution seamless 3D Active Stereo display for collaborative design reviews.
    • Head-mounted displays for 360° immersive walkthroughs.
    • Full body tracking for Human Factors Engineering & validations of operations & maintenance workflows.
  • Delivery & integration of VR Software providing the following key functionality:
    • Integration with Aveva Marine & Foran ship design software for lossless & seamless translation of CAD models to VR format.
    • Virtual prototyping features to enable immersive walkthroughs, physics-based interactions, and feedback directly on the design model.
    • Real-time secure collaboration between multiple sites, eliminating the need for travel or security risks with data sharing.
  • Setup of complete IT infrastructure along with site preparation including interiors & electricals at the site location to ensure a perfect blend of technology & ambiance.
The project involved the following key activities:
  • Consulting with GSL’s design, IT & management teams on technical & non-technical requirements to design the layout and detailed bill-of-materials.
  • Procurement, delivery & integration of all software & hardware equipment  as identified during the design phase.
  • Integration of Exxar software with the Design network that allows the GSL design team to publish the necessary design models in VR format and enable various stakeholders to participate in immersive design reviews.

The Challenge

Due to the diverse nature of stakeholders, ensuring that the project was delivered to everyone’s expectations was a huge challenge. The design, IT, management & production team members at GSL, all had to be satisfied with the delivered solution.

In addition, there were COVID-related supply chain challenges leading to delivery delays from multiple OEMs across the globe. This kept the VizExperts project management teams awake overnight on multiple occasions.

The system integration aspect was another challenge since the complete solution was expected to run on multiple very different VR devices – the HTC Vive, which runs on a PC, and the 3D power wall, which has extremely high resolution and different interaction devices.

The Road to Success

Being the industry leader in setting up VR Centers for over 16 years, the VizExperts team was well-versed in the challenges and had multiple solutions and backup plans for potential issues. The team followed a strict process for approvals, procurement, integration & commissioning. Each element in the project was procured strictly as per approvals from the GSL team. Even after that, as is true for most real-world projects, many times changes were required. The teams patiently iterated on the requested changes and incorporated them based on GSL’s feedback. The complete project was finished within the stringent time that was allocated by GSL.

Thanks to hard work and flawless execution, GSL is now able to bring leaders and stakeholders from their customers as well as internal to the organization on a common platform. This helps ensure that there are zero communication gaps between all the parties. The Navy team can review the design models and give their acceptance with confidence. Earlier “the navy teams found it extremely difficult to visualize the ship model while looking at a 2D projection screen or a monitor. Many critical safety, operational, and maintenance aspects were unfortunately missed during this process and detected during the ship construction.” 

In summary, GSL is now able to save costs, improve quality & reduce the time to deliver warships. With this digital technology in place, GSL can now substantially improve its competitive position and implement additional technologies to further improve its cost, quality, and time metrics in the delivery of complex warships & naval vessels.

About VizExperts

VizExperts is a pioneer and market leader in Virtual & Augmented Reality technology. Collaborating with Industrial enterprises, the VizExperts team helps them improve efficiencies and delight customers with immersive design reviews, training, and customer experiences. VizExperts’ list of clients includes prestigious Government & Enterprise organizations in Shipbuilding, Energy, Aerospace, Automotive, Industrial Equipment & Engineering Education. For further information or business inquiries, please contact or call / WhatsApp on +1-646-338-3653 or +91-98185-15641

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