Simulator software puts operators in touch
By Steve Ducker14 September 2016
Using data from its machines, materials and customer sites, Volvo Construction Equipment’s (CE) simulator upgrade allows operators to practice real-world scenarios like never before.
The new software is the first to allow excavator, wheel loader and articulated hauler operators to interact in the same virtual environment, meaning they are able to see each other’s movements and work together to complete jobs.
Customers can even input a three-dimensional map of their site and material data, enabling operators to practice real-world tasks without even setting foot in a cab.
This emphasis on realism and accuracy is rapidly separating Volvo CE’s simulator from others on the market. What’s more, the upgrade does not require any additional hardware to run and can be downloaded via the internet.
“We’re using industry-leading software that offers multiple scenarios in different settings,” said Stefan Pettersson, an application engineer within Volvo CE’s Sales Region EMEA.
“The operator cannot simply ‘learn’ the course like in a video game; they have to improve their skills in order to achieve a higher score.
“By trialling different routes to time, material types and densities, and machine settings, the upgraded simulator can help customers achieve maximum productivity and uptime while minimising fuel consumption and wear.”
During operation, real-time data is relayed back to spectators or trainers on a separate screen about both the individual operators and the combined effort. This data can then be compared to average operator values, including those who have completed Volvo CE’s ECO operator training.
Production value, machine cost, operator cost and actual revenue is generated, which – when combined with fixed costs such as depreciation, interest, machine tax and insurance – gives potential customers an accurate total cost of ownership projection.
“The new software is essential for effective operator training,” added Stefan.