The transformative power of digitalization cannot be overstated. “Digitalization is the use of digital technologies to change a business model and provide new revenue and value-producing opportunities,” says Gartner.
Digitalization is a process. The conversion of paper or analog data and processes to digital information has been a massive undertaking for large enterprises. This conversion has resulted in significant savings and improved data sharing across big organizations and has enabled distributed projects. Companies are now moving to the next phases of digitalization: from data management to data visualization.
From Digital Data to Digital Twins
Most companies made the switch from paper files to asset management system years ago. These asset management systems provide tremendous benefits: dashboards, reporting, maps, and mobile access are all standard features, and allow for much more efficient management of distributed projects. Asset management systems, however, depend upon the accuracy of the last entry by field personnel. The maxim “Garbage in, garbage out,” holds true here: if the data entered or transferred over from legacy systems is out of date or inaccurate, it becomes useless.
A digital twin, however, provides an opportunity to understand the data in a different way: most importantly, it is irrefutable. A highly accurate digital 3D model of an asset created from actual images shows what is really there. With digital twin software, stakeholders located anywhere in the world can examine an asset model closely, interact with it, and take the information and insights that they need from it.
The Benefits of Data Visualization
Data visualization provides quick, clear understanding of an asset – allowing stakeholders to draw conclusions and insights more easily. Visualization shows patterns and identifies potential issues more clearly; and enables more accurate analysis.
For tower companies, field data gathered by autonomous drones can create accurate digital twins of assets that allow data visualization. Using digital twin software provides significant value in inspections: inspectors can see extreme detail as they navigate around a 3D model, interacting with the data. Users don’t need to be onsite to see the asset in person, they can rely upon the accuracy of a visual model. Operational experts can confirm the exact configuration of the asset, reconciling billing and ensuring accuracy in communications with tenants.
Digital twin software provides perhaps even more benefits by allowing users to visualize what may not yet exist. Digital models can be used in Building Information Modeling (BIM) tools: by manipulating a model, decision makers are able to visualize how a new site might be developed; or how an existing site may need to change in order to become more profitable.
When large organizations move from siloed information repositories to true digitization that enables visualization and interaction with the information, the new value-producing opportunities that Gartner promises will be realized.
The image below represents the shift from high resolution 2D imagery to interactive 3D models
The Innovative Digital Twin Software Enabling the Next Phase of Digitization
Autonomous drones are a relatively new tool enabling this shift to digital asset models. vHive is at the leading edge of this technology, allowing companies to gather aerial data quickly and easily; to transform that data into digital twin models that stakeholders can interact with; and to enable powerful analytics. With the vHive unique patent technologies for autonomous drones, sophisticated software determines the optimal flight pattern around an asset to create an accurate 3D model. Using an inexpensive, commercial-off-the-shelf drone, operators can easily execute the drone mission to gather the data. Data is uploaded automatically to the cloud, where it is processed into a form that can be visualized, manipulated, and ultimately used to develop insights and value for an organization. In making digital twins of assets easy to acquire and easy to use, vHive is working to allow those organizations to reap the benefits of the next phase of digitization.