Exxaro Resources has announced a partnership with the University of Pretoria to establish the first ever Exxaro Chair in Extended Reality (XR) Technology. The objective of the partnership is to offer a framework on how XR technology can be used to solve mining industry challenges, and to identify the best available technologies for these solutions, which ultimately will lead to a safer, more economical, and more environmentally sensitive form of mining.
Extended Reality technology refers to all real-and-virtual combined environments and human-machine interactions generated by computer technology, including augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR) and virtual reality (VR).
The company will work with the Virtual Reality and Interaction (VRI) Lab, an initiative of the Department of Information Science at the University of Pretoria, as well as the Department of Mining Engineering. The VRI lab applies XR technologies to create interactive user experiences for various applications.
Among the solutions that will be explored are the application of individual and shared VR; mobile, tethered and cave setup VR; communication VR; tracked and untracked VR space; as well as hand tracking and full body tracking.
Exxaro CEO, Mxolisi Mgojo says, “Together, we are expanding upon the practical capabilities of XR in the South African context while supporting our need for industry to embrace the opportunities of the 4th Industrial Revolution. The possibilities of what we could develop are really exciting.”