Google Glass Comes to Manufacturing

July 16, 2013
Using the MTConnect app, Google Glass can now be used for training and to receive and share machine operating data.


Google Glass has been getting a lot of press over the past several months, but mostly for consumer augmented reality applications such as restaurant reviews/ratings and shopping. Now the technology is coming to manufacturing with the release of the MTConnect + Google Glass from Indiana Technology and Manufacturing Companies (ITAMCO).

MTConnect is a manufacturing industry standard established for the organized retrieval of process information from numerically controlled machine tools.  The free Glassware application can be used to monitor machine tools using Google Glass.

Google Glass is a heads-up display built into a spectacle frame that incorporates a camera, touchpad, microphone, email and Internet connection. Coupled with MTConnect functionality, Google Glass recognizes the machine tool, retrieves appropriate information from MTConnect and parses the MTConnect stream to display it for the Google Glass wearer. According to ITAMCO, with MTConnect + Google Glass, the user will be able to view the following information from the MTConnect-compatible equipment: power status, emergency stop, alarm/messages, block, controller mode, line, program, execution, path feed-rate, spindle, axis positions, spindle overrides, feed-rate overrides, machine location, part location, and current part status.

If a camera is placed inside a machine, Google Glass can stream the video to the user and overlay the machine data so the user can compare and analyze the information. ITAMCO notes that, with the Internet connection and email capabilities built into Google Glass, a user could also record and share this data.

The video below is a brief primer on the basic operation of Google Glass with MTConnect.

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