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Operation guides and product presentations transformed using 3D

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Historically, 3D animation presented itself to the public mainly in the form of computer games, animated films or animated elements superimposed into live action scenes, in Jurassic Park 1 for example, which gave a new edge to the cinematography experience. Within industry at that time its use was rarely realised except for the ‘artist’s impression’ walkthroughs on expensive developments. The occasional 3D-animated diagram also came to light in limited applications.

When Animmersion was experimenting with early versions of Flash and then later the ‘real-time 3D’ open source technologies such as ViewPoint we started to see possibilities in their application to industry. In many cases manufacturers would have developed their products using AutoCad, SolidWorks or other CAD systems – so we had something to start with. This made it more palatable from a project costing standpoint because in the past it was largely cost that scared away marketers and trainers alike.

The company’s first programme began years ago with Schneider Electric in the UK where a basic model of an MV Switchgear unit was used in an interactive programme to allow prospective customers and trainers to interact using a mouse, zooming and rotating the life like model and absorb its features and operation.

Animmersion then moved on to combining real-time 3D alongside beautifully rendered animations of different operation sequences such as switching and earthing. The animations proved visually clear and explanatory and could be fired from an interactive menu which ran efficiently using web technologies offline through an internet browser.

The company takes existing CAD models, transports them to its system, strips out unwanted (unseen) internal engineering detail to reduce the normally huge file sizes, adds any required extras, adds textures and then lighting. The ‘animation’ which demonstrate the movement of parts of the product are agreed by the customer before the process of rendering the hundreds of ‘animation frames’ to a life-like quality. The eventual model provides the basis for both real-time 3D interactions where they are imported and further progressed, or 3D-animated sequences. A user ‘menu’ is provided and branded iaccordingly. The result is an advanced CD – based product presentation tool or operation guide which can easily be adapted to multiple languages and can be version controlled when fascia or integral changes affect the products design. The resultant 3D model can be used then across different applications without the need to rebuild.


tel: 01642 384474


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