Keywords: virtual environments, virtual reality, product design reviews, product design and development, 3-D visual displays, empirical testing, stereoscopic displays, cross-functional teams
Integrating virtual 3-D display systems into product design reviews: some insights from empirical testing
The infusion of virtual three-dimensional (3-D) display systems into the product design and development process has intrigued researchers and practitioners in recent years. However, the variety of commercially available devices has complicated system selection and use for this application. This paper presents results of a study designed to determine if virtual display systems contribute to cross-functional team collaboration during product design reviews. The research conducted at a US Army design facility investigates design team use of virtual environments (VEs) for evaluation of a new armoured vehicle-refuelling concept. Study results indicated that teams detect more design errors when using stereoscopic glasses or conventional monoscopic cathode ray tube (CRT) monitor systems, they detect design errors faster using a head mounted display (HMD), and no differences were found for the time to resolve identified design problems. Subjective perceptions and preferences data analyses indicated that HMD and CRT monitor systems were liked best.