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A State-of-the-Art Review of Augmented Reality in Engineering Analysis and Simulation

by Wenkai Li 1,2, A. Y. C. Nee 1,2,* and S. K. Ong 1,2
NUS Graduate School for Integrative Sciences and Engineering, National University of Singapore, 28 Medical Drive, Singapore 117456, Singapore
Mechanical Engineering Department, National University of Singapore, 9 Engineering Drive 1, Singapore 117576, Singapore
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Multimodal Technologies Interact. 2017, 1(3), 17;
Received: 18 July 2017 / Revised: 12 August 2017 / Accepted: 23 August 2017 / Published: 5 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Augmented Reality)
Augmented reality (AR) has recently become a worldwide research topic. AR technology renders intuitive computer-generated contents on users’ physical surroundings. To improve process efficiency and productivity, researchers and developers have paid increasing attention to AR applications in engineering analysis and simulation. The integration of AR with numerical simulation, such as the finite element method, provides a cognitive and scientific way for users to analyze practical problems. By incorporating scientific visualization technologies, an AR-based system superimposes engineering analysis and simulation results directly on real-world objects. Engineering analysis and simulation involving diverse types of data are normally processed using specific computer software. Correct and effective visualization of these data using an AR platform can reduce the misinterpretation in spatial and logical aspects. Moreover, tracking performance of the AR platforms in engineering analysis and simulation is crucial as it influences the overall user experience. The operating environment of the AR platforms requires robust tracking performance to deliver stable and accurate information to the users. In addition, over the past several decades, AR has undergone a transition from desktop to mobile computing. The portability and propagation of mobile platforms has provided engineers with convenient access to relevant information in situ. However, on-site working environment imposes constraints on the development of mobile AR-based systems. This paper aims to provide a systematic overview of AR in engineering analysis and simulation. The visualization, tracking techniques as well as the implementation on mobile platforms are discussed. Each technique is analyzed with respect to its pros and cons, as well its suitability to particular types of applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: augmented reality; numerical simulation; scientific visualization augmented reality; numerical simulation; scientific visualization
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Li, W.; Nee, A.Y.C.; Ong, S.K. A State-of-the-Art Review of Augmented Reality in Engineering Analysis and Simulation. Multimodal Technologies Interact. 2017, 1, 17.

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