Challenge

Augmented Reality Application for Visualizing Assets in the Field

Energy companies across the country are hardening their energy grids due to increased frequency and intensity of storms and inclement weather that result in significant outages for customers. Moving power lines underground is often the best way to create resiliency, reliability, and cost savings. However, utilities face resistance due to customers not being able to envision what the equipment will look like, slowing underground rollout and increasing the costs of the rollout.

One of the largest regulated utilities companies in the United States collaborated with CapTech to support its undergrounding efforts, with an interest in adopting innovative technology to support speed and efficiency with customer decision making – and with an eye toward improving overall satisfaction. Enter our visualization field app powered by augmented reality (AR).

Results

50% better performance on average for underground power lines in day-to-day operations, compared with overhead lines

The AR visualization field app allowed specialists to place 3D digital objects in real physical spaces, which helped drive meaningful conversation and engagement with customers. When customers visualized the energy company’s plan to place equipment on their property, they were more likely to provide approval in a timely manner. This was especially successful with property owners who live overseas, as well as those with smaller lots, assisting owners in visualizing options to place equipment unobtrusively on their properties. Additional benefits and results included:

  • Improved the utility’s ability to plan laterals and project completion dates while minimizing delays due to missing customer approvals
  • Ensured accuracy of equipment placement by construction crews in legal easement areas using coordinates set by the specialist
  • Improved customer satisfaction with the completed project given alignment to the plan presented by the utility
  • Added safety for customers and employees by minimizing face-to-face interactions

Overall the AR app has helped to increase service reliability and the energy grid’s resiliency. AR solutions in the energy sector can generate significant impact through better consumer engagement, revenue growth, and workforce productivity.

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