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Augmented Reality in City Asset Management: Towards Better and Safer Working Conditions

Augmented reality can empower cities to manage and maintain all kinds of assets, from roads and cell towers to streetlights.


Augmented reality is evolving by leaps and bounds. All of the flashy and exciting cultural innovations like Pokémon Go and Snapchat filters are just the beginning. Its true transformative power lies in its ability to synthesize and contextualize data in the physical world.

The rise of smart infrastructures and sensor networks fuels the production of unstructured and structured data. In order to gain valuable insights into public assets, cities must collect the information they need.

That’s where AR comes in.

Visualizing Data Using Augmented Reality 

AR overlays computer-generated graphics in the physical world, making it appear as if it’s part of the world before you. By using AR-enabled devices or applications, you can see additional objects or information everywhere.

Simply put, AR transforms your reality. Unlike virtual reality, it doesn’t fully immerse you into a virtual environment. It lets you see crucial information about real-world objects.

When used in the public sector, AR can empower our cities, especially in terms of asset management and maintenance. Workers will be able to identify issues in various city assets, reduce repair time, and minimize risks.

Wearable technologies increase operational efficiency and minimize errors. Realtime AR, for instance, can enhance workers’ performance on the field and keep them safe. It attaches to a hardhat or bump cap with ease. No matter the environment, it will help the workforce move efficiently and safely.

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Giving workers hands-free access to important data allows them to work with more safety and perform with greater accuracy.

The Advantages of Augmented Reality in City Asset Management

From streetlights and fire hydrants to roads and cell towers, cities have a myriad of assets to manage and maintain. AR can make the job a whole lot easier for the public sector.

Whether through AR smart goggles or smartphones, field workers can assess city assets efficiently and safely. They can also identify dangerous conditions, then come up with repair or maintenance strategies from a safe distance.

Vuzix is another company making AR glasses for field services. Aside from providing protective eyewear, it enables location-based information, remote support communication, and data collection.

If AR is combined with other technologies, perhaps it might be possible to keep the information about city assets up to date in real time. Technicians or engineers might even be able to perform remote inspections and surveys. This can help cities conserve resources, especially when field workers are spread too thin.

Furthermore, workers wearing AR headsets on-site can connect to specialists or supervisors in real time. They can share a first-person perspective video feed of the site. They can also receive instructions and guidance.

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Augmented reality has limitless applications, which might soon be ubiquitous to everyday life. In city assets management, AR makes fieldwork a bit safer for technicians and engineers. They can also work efficiently, reducing downtime, and cutting costs in the process. As AR further evolves, it can power smart cities and transform lives.


Gergana Mileva
the authorGergana Mileva