What is a digital twin?

Digital Twin technology is a key pillar of industry 5.0 – but what exactly is it and how is it a revolution?

A Digital Twin is a virtual model or representation of a real world, physical counterpart. Unlike simulations, digital twins are real time virtual environments that can change. Digital twins are often equipped with sensors to provide continuous feedback data.

The benefits of real time data are applicable across many industries. From manufacturing lines to city planning, experts foresee a use case in every industry.

A virtual environment provides a safe ground for research and development. This environment hosts unique conditions to simulate scenarios and generate synthetic data (data that is not generated from the real world). Synthetic datasets provide insights that can help improve products’ design, production, systems and lifecycles. 

Digital Twin Examples

1. Production Lines

Optimising production has been a business-critical goal for decades. There are several benefits to using digital twin technologies in production. Increase speed, improve safety and reduce cost are core goals. This can be achieved virtually without stopping production using a digital twin.

2. Site Planning and Monitoring

In large industrial or infrastructural sites, digital twins provide a better planning platform. It can be time consuming and resource intensive to physically make changes to these sites – even more so based on a bad decision. Virtual twins provide unique insights that can inform decisions, without the need to physically test.

3. Component Maintenance

Simulations in digital twins provide datasets to inform manufacturers of product performance. In power generation, a digital twin of an engine simulates different tests. This leads to increased understanding of lifecycle and timeframes for expected maintenance. 

4. Autonomous Vehicles

Industries such as automotive are developing self-driving vehicles. Training and validating the AI requires a lot of data. However, some scenarios are difficult to encounter in the real world. This creates a bottleneck in the development of autonomous vehicles. Virtual worlds or digital twins are one solution which provide an environment to simulate events instead, using tools such as Carla Driving Simulator. 


How are digital twins used? 

Today, digital twins are being used to create more efficient processes and products. The benefits and insights that synthetic data provides are unparalleled. Industry 5.0 is building on smart interconnectivity from the previous decade, introducing autonomy and reducing physical bottlenecks. Digitalisation of industries is already underway, meaning digital twins will soon become a norm. 

Benefits of digital twins

Optimise Processes

Increase Efficiency

Improve Safety

Simulate Lifecycle

Repli5 focuses on creating Digital Twins of physical environments. We take create a synthetic replica of a real place; such as a test track, quarry site or even a town. These digital twins can be used in simulators for testing or validating perception systems. There are several benefits in this use case; creating more data, specified to given parameters, without the need to physically test. Save time, save money.

If you’d like to learn more about how digital twins can transform your business, reach out to the team at Repli5.

We create the tools for you to build custom 3D simulation environments for autonomous vehicles.

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