Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - 31

Raytheon Missile Systems

space, the company can test out different configurations and create models
for optimized factory environments.
"On top of that, we can also look at
how the products are going to flow and
design workstations that are more
ergonomic for our workers," Ernzen
says, adding that the company's new
facility in Alabama was designed from
scratch through the Immersive Design Center, which saved the company three months of construction time
and millions of dollars.
"When we find problems on the
virtual end, it saves us millions of dollars," Loomis says.
Another application for virtual reality technology at Raytheon is in training, Loomis says. She says the company has had good results from training
operators in a virtual environment
rather than simply having them read

manuals. The experience employees
gain from learning how to operate
equipment in the virtual space means
they retain more and are better prepared when it comes to the real thing.
"They are literally standing looking
at a virtual workstation with virtual
equipment," Loomis says. "That type
of Tony Stark environment is where
we're going with our training."

Complete Control
Designing and collaborating in the
virtual realm has been a game-changer for Raytheon. But when it comes to
actually realizing those designs in the
real world, the company has leveraged
advanced automation to deliver products more effectively and efficiently.
Although automation has been a substantial component of the company's
manufacturing processes for years

West

already, Ernzen says the robotics systems of today are even better at handling some of the extreme-precision
tasks that go into one of Raytheon's
missile systems.
For example, Ernzen says, new
automation systems have allowed
the company to streamline its testing process, which traditionally has
been one of the more expensive and
time-consuming aspects of the company's processes. She says precision
automation has made it possible for
Raytheon to put multiple products
through distributed test stations with
greater efficiency. "It has saved us and
our government customer millions
and millions of dollars from an infrastructure cost as opposed to having
to go out and acquire more testing
equipment," Ernzen says, adding that
this system also allows operators to
NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2016 manufacturing-today.com

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016

Table Of Contents
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Cover1
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Cover2
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - 1
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Table Of Contents
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - 3
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Manufacturing Today - November/December 2016 - Cover3
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