ASME

Journal of Computing and Information Science in Engineering

Special Issue: Extended Reality in Design and Manufacturing

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J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng. Mar 2024, 24(3): 030301

Guest Editorial

Extended Reality (XR) is a collective term that contains Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), Mixed Reality (MR), and everything in between. VR is an immersive technology that allows users to interact within a computer-generated 3D virtual environment. AR enhances the user’s situational awareness (SA) by superimposing virtual content onto a real scene. MR is a step beyond AR by combining physical reality with digital content in a way that enables real-time interaction with and among real and virtual elements. In the business world, a similarly captivating term, metaverse, indicates a single, universal, and immersive virtual world focused on social and economic connections facilitated by the use of XR technologies [1].

XR has proven to be an effective communication medium for humans to instantly interact with other entities in shared spaces. As a result, it has received significant attention from both industry and academia. VR/AR is among the nine enabling technologies in the Industry 4.0 paradigm [2], serving as the only human-centric technology designed specifically for end users. This feature conforms well to the human-centric core value emphasized by the emerging Industry 5.0 [3]. With this advantage, XR could play a critical role in extending cyber-physical systems (CPS) into human-cyber-physical systems (HCPS), seamlessly integrating data, computational intelligence, and real-world situations through context-specific sensory cues for human interaction.

With the recent advances in information and communication technologies (ICT), traditional manufacturing systems have evolved into “smart” ones in handling the ever-increasing complexity of tasks incorporating a high degree of autonomy and intelligence. Nevertheless, there are specific tasks on the shop floor that are either impractical or impossible to complete without human intervention. In such situations, the main purpose of smart manufacturing would be to facilitate manual operations, rather than to completely replace human involvement. Indeed, integrated with artificial intelligence (AI), 5G, cloud computing, and Internet-of-Things (IoT), XR applications have been successfully implemented and deployed to assist a diverse range of manual operations within the manufacturing sector [4,5]. The recent special issue titled “Challenges and Opportunities in Computing Research to Enable Next Generation Engineering Applications” published in the Journal of Computing and Information Science in Engineering (JCISE) also features three review articles focusing on extended reality [68]. In addition, the journal has published 16 papers with the words VR, AR, MR, XR, or Metaverse appearing in either the title or abstract between 2018 and 2023 [924]. This trend shows a growing interest in XR research in the JCISE community. A special issue focusing on the related fields would be necessary and timely to address this need.

The purpose of this special issue is to solicit articles describing fundamental and applied research on XR techniques, solutions, and challenges in the area of design and manufacturing. This issue aims to cover all aspects of XR technology, including technical advances in software/hardware, algorithms, ergonomic analysis, system implementation, and novel empirical studies, for product design and manufacturing processes. In total, eight papers are included following rigorous review and revisions, and each is briefly introduced as follows….

Guest Editors

Chih-Hsing Chu
National Tsing Hua University,  Hsinchu 300,  Taiwan
 
William Bernstein
Air Force Research Laboratory,  Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 45433
 
Yunbo “WILL” Zhang
Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY 14623
 
Vinayak R. Krishnamurthy
Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843
 
Junfeng Ma
Mississippi State University,  Mississippi, MS 39762
 

Research Papers

J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng. March 2024, 24(3): 031001. doi:https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4062543
 
J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng. March 2024, 24(3): 031002. doi:https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4062596
 
J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng. March 2024, 24(3): 031005. doi:https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4062970
 

Technical Brief

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Announcements

Special Issue on Geometric Data Processing and Analysis for Advanced Manufacturing

Geometric information, such as three-dimensional (3D) shapes and network topologies, has been increasingly explored in manufacturing research. For example, characterizing geometric information in 3D-printed parts, in-situ or ex-situ, opens opportunities for defect detection, quality improvement, and product customization. However, geometric data mining remains critically challenging. Geometric information is embedded in complex data structures, such as 3D point clouds, graphs, meshes, voxels, high-dimensional images, and tensors, which possess challenges for analysis due to their high-dimensionality, high-volume, unstructured, multimodality characteristics. Additional challenges stem from compromised data quality (e.g., noisy and incomplete data), the need for registration, etc.

Announcements

2023 Reviewer’s Recognition

The Editor and Editorial Board of the Journal of Computing and Information Science in Engineering would like to thank all of the reviewers for volunteering their expertise and time reviewing manuscripts in 2023. Serving as reviewers for the journal is a critical service necessary to maintain the quality of our publication and to provide the authors with a valuable peer review of their work.

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