UN sustainability goals, and European and Swedish research agendas, describe a need for efficient and effective tools and intervention methods to improve our ability to monitor and prevent disorders and diseases. European and Swedish research agendas also call for efficient digitalisation tools for design, modelling, simulation, optimisation, visualisation, and forecasting of products and production processes, resources, systems, and factories during their life cycle.
The research and development area of virtual ergonomics, which is within the core of the scientific sub-areas of the research environment INFINIT at University of Skövde, is positioned in the union of the two important and challenging needs: sustainability and digitalisation.
The core research question of the Synergy project Virtual Ergonomics (KKS Dnr 20180167) is: "How to design, realise and validate usable decision support and associated methods, used to consider physical and cognitive ergonomics as well as system performance in virtual and real environments for development and operations in industry and health care sector". To answer the core research question it is divided into three interactively contributing sub-questions with detailed research objectives: Physical ergonomics and system performance, Cognitive functionalities, and Gamification of digital human modelling. The project has three themes cross-cutting the sub-questions, creating a matrix structure: Modelling behaviour and appearance, Assessment, and Interaction.
Contribue with techniques and methods
The project will contribute to advance the knowledge within the scientific field of virtual ergonomics as well as maintain University of Skövde's national leading position in the field and strengthen the international reputation. More specifically the research contributions will include techniques and methods for how to make well-informed design decisions related to ergonomics, mainly at virtual stages of the product realisation process, e.g. represent human diversity, digital twin solutions, model and assess cognitive ergonomics, instruct manikin from demonstration, apply personas descriptions on manikins, and interact with manikin in immersive virtual reality (VR).
Partners and furthur development
The research will be co-produced together with the industry partners. In order to test, demonstrate and validate research findings, results achieved along the project will be implemented into IPS IMMA, which is a continuously developed digital human modelling (DHM) software testbed platform. The project will be an important means to develop an integrated research and education environment for virtual ergonomics at the University, and an important contributor to University of Skövde's overall theme for research and education: Digitalization for sustainable development.