Ford is installing a cutting edge, high technology SGI Reality Centre at its Dunton Design Studio in Essex that will enable its designers and engineers to project full-size images of new vehicle designs.
"The new Reality Centre will help Ford engineers to improve the timing, accuracy and quality of vehicle exterior and interior design," said Chris Bird, Ford of Europe's design director.
"The use of 3D technology will further help us to accelerate the vehicle design and development process. We will now be able to project a full-size image of a design idea onto a screen to get a much better idea of how it might actually look in reality. This will help us to better judge the aesthetics of a design and, if necessary, enable design changes to be made efficiently and cost-effectively earlier on in the design process."
Developed by SGI, the Reality Centre will add to Ford’s existing portfolio of SGI technology, which includes three additional Reality Centre facilities in the United States and one at Ford's Merkenich Design Studio near Cologne. The Dunton centre will allow greater collaboration in vehicle design between Ford engineers based in Britain and Germany. A network connection between the two centres will enable greater use of integrated video conferencing and an increased sharing of data that will help speed up product development processes.
The Reality Centre will feature a rear-projected wall driven by an SGI Onyx 300 visualisation supercomputer with InfiniteReality3Ô graphics. The installation will also include the SGI UPSafe power protection solution to ensure the availability of uninterruptible power to the facility.
Steve Liscoe, U.K. general manager at SGI, said: "I’m delighted that Ford has again chosen to work with SGI. The addition of a new SGI Reality Centre facility at Ford's Dunton Design Studio will help designers and engineers to achieve higher levels of collaboration in the vehicle design process. By adding to its portfolio of high-performance computing solutions, Ford is providing its designers and engineers with access to the best visualisation technology available today."
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