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March 14, 2023

Introducing a unique solution for remote control of Spot with MR and VR Glasses

As part of our commitment to technological innovation and digitalization in the industrial sector, we present a pioneering European solution for remote gestural control of Spot with virtual and mixed reality glasses. This unique solution on the market allows the Boston Dynamics Spot quadruped robot to teleoperate with precision in the most dangerous areas or in infrastructures the operator cannot reach, which provides speed and avoids displacements.

In addition, we are also presenting a solution based on NeRF technology that takes digital twins to the next level.

To present both technological advances to the world, we have called a press conference in which we have counted the presence of media such as Agencia EFE, TVE, or 20Minutos, among others. It was a different kind of meeting in which journalists experienced first-hand both solutions and where Quique Martínez, CEO of Plain Concepts, talked about the company’s next steps.

MRLink Unit: your Mixed Reality Remote Connection

Large industrial, oil and gas, energy, telecommunications, or hydraulic installations have increasingly complex and sometimes dangerous processes for operators. While automation has reduced workers’ exposure to these risks, human intervention is still required for many maintenance and servicing tasks.

To address this issue, we combined our expertise in mixed and virtual reality technologies with robotics to develop the MRLink Unit. This innovative technological solution allows virtual and mixed reality glasses to control Spot, the Boston Dynamics robot, from any geographic location and in real-time.

MRLink Unit allows companies in various sectors to reduce the risk of accidents at work, increase surveillance of their facilities thanks to Spot’s system of multiple sensors, and avoid requiring technical staff to travel to another city to operate the robot.

The multi-device solution is currently compatible with Microsoft HoloLens 2 and Meta Quest Pro devices. From a mixed or virtual reality interface, the operator gets an immersive experience with a first- or third-person view and can intuitively command movements to the robot in real-time with their gestures. This provides greater precision than, for example, a keyboard or joystick control.

The Digital Twin of the future

In our firm commitment to digital twins as a key element in the transition to Industry 4.0, we have also presented a solution that will allow, from now on, to create photorealistic digital twins quickly and easily, something unique in the market compared to other technologies.

Until now, digital twins were 3D representations of real environments that, while they may have been highly accurate, had an unattractive visual appearance and simple and basic colors. To take the digital twin to a higher level of detail, we used Evergine, our graphics engine, to combine point cloud technology, which provides millimeter-accurate measurement data of a real environment by capturing millions of points in space, with a visual layer of NeRF (Neural Radiance Field) technology in one viewer, resulting in a photorealistic digital twin within minutes.

NeRF is an innovative technology capable of recreating the elements of a scene with artificial intelligence to create a photorealistic 3D image that can be viewed from any point of view and multiple devices. This solution is an evolution of photogrammetry and can correctly represent transparent or metallic objects with reflections.

The application of NeRF to the digital twin will make it possible to create more detailed simulations and replicas. This helps, for example, to make better decisions for the construction of buildings or developing smart cities.

In addition, we have integrated ChatGPT in the demo with the possibility to load the manual of a specific machine and thus give assistance to an expert, answering questions that are found in that extensive document, whatever language it is in, and translating it on the spot.

These two solutions are just the first step in offering companies the most innovative solutions to help them improve their processes, but we will soon be able to share many more. Stay tuned!

*Plain Concepts has carried out the HoloRobot project Remote Control of a multi-operated Humanoid Quadruped Robot Through Mixed Reality, between 2021 and 2022. The project has been supported by the CDTI EXP 00143060 / IDI-20220314, and has been co-financed by the European Union and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

cdti innovación y unión europea

Elena Canorea
Elena Canorea
Communications Lead