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QAPCO In Tie-Up For Augmented Reality Research

Qatar Petrochemical Company (Qapco) and the College of the North Atlantic – Qatar (CNA-Q) have agreed to undertake research into the use of augmented reality for training oil and gas sector students.

Augmented Reality (AR) allows multiple types of information to be superimposed over what we see in the real world through tablets, phones or glasses.  With AR, instructions or processes to perform tasks can be displayed visually, rather than having to read through a manual and can greatly reduce time needed for task completion and human error.

The research project would involve the identification of approximately three to five critical tasks commonly performed on one piece of equipment by entry-level technicians at CNA-Q. Customised augmented reality learning objects would then be developed that support competency in performing those tasks.

The learning objects would then be tested using volunteer students from CNA-Q’s Engineering Technology and Technical Preparatory Programmes. In this stage, qualitative data would be collected from learners to determine attitudes towards training using augmented reality-based learning objects.

Dr Mohammed Yousef Al Mulla, vice chairman and CEO of Qapco said: “We believe that augmented reality can increase the level of critical competencies needed for employment, such as a technician in Qatar’s oil and gas sector.

“We are first adopters in the use of augmented reality training and performance support solutions in the Oil and Gas sector in Qatar and in the GCC region and are excited about this new technology as Qapco would benefit from a better prepared trainee workforce and from exposure to performance support and training solutions that could potentially be integrated into its our own workplace training programmes.”

Dr Ken MacLeod, president of CNA-Q said: “CNA-Q will gain a better understanding of the potential for AR-based training and its application in our blended learning solutions.  As a result, Qatari students will benefit from an enhanced, 21st century learning experience that is not only completely safe, but taps into their preferred learning style and is more engaging and motivational.”

“Additionally, because we will be developing Augmented Reality learning objects that are customized to Qapco’s equipment and procedures, Qapco technician trainees will be better prepared for their careers in the oil and gas sector,” he concluded.