Nvidia and friends build a 5G VR workspace for engineers

Hyperbat 5g vr

Chip giant Nvidia has got a gang of firms together to build a virtual collaborative industrial workspace using edge computing and what it says is the world’s first 5G-enabled VR.

BT, Ericsson, the GRID Factory, Masters of Pie, Qualcomm and NVIDIA all lent their respective expertise to the project based at electric vehicle battery manufacturer Hyperbat. In a nutshell, two engineering teams located about 70 miles apart were able to collaborate as if they were in the same room thanks to a VR set up powered by edge computing installations and 5G.

It’s a kind of digital twin with VR interface, which is supposed to allow design and manufacturing teams to interact with a 3D, lifesize model of an electric vehicle battery, and prove the concept of collaborative virtual work spaces in an industrial setting.

The renders are created using Nvidia GPUs, RTX Virtual Workstation software and Nvidia CloudXR technology, while Masters of Pie provided a collaboration engine called Radical, which serves up an ‘extended reality experience’, and the 5G-enabled VR headset is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2 platform. Putting this together, large amounts of data can be rapidly processed on remote computers before being streamed to VR headsets. Hooking it all up to 5G via an Ericsson radio and private 5G network at Hyperbat is supposed to provide the immediate response times that make this sort of thing useful.

“This digital twin solution at Hyperbat is the future of manufacturing,” said Marc Overton, managing director of Division X, part of BT’s Enterprise business. “It shows how a 5G private network can provide the foundation for a whole host of new technologies which can have a truly transformative effect in terms of collaboration, innovation and speeding up the manufacturing process.”

Katherine Ainley, CEO of Ericsson UK and Ireland added: “Hyperbat’s use case is another demonstration of how 5G and digitalization can really help boost the U.K.’s economy and industry. This technology can really drive efficiency and help us innovate on a whole new scale.

It’s not going to wow the general public into getting excited about 5G or VR/the metaverse, but as ever bespoke industrial settings continue to throw up use cases of next gen tech at the more convincing end of the spectrum. You can check the project out here:


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