Xu, Zhijie, Zhao, Z. X. and Baines, R. W. (1998) Virtual Environment Construction and Applications. In: Proceedings of the 1998 Chinese Automation Conference in the UK: Leicester, England, 19-20th September 1998. Pacilantic International, Leicester, UK. ISBN 0-953-38900-6

The construction and management of complex virtual reality (VR) environments is a bottleneck for applying virtual reality technology to manufacturing problems. Current bottom-up construction approaches are tedious and inflexible. This paper presents a variant approach to managing and constructing virtual manufacturing environments. The approach is established on the management of systematically stored virtual manufacturing environments. Each environment is constructed in an object-oriented manner. Based on the approach, a virtual manufacturing environment management system is created as a framework for manufacturing knowledge acquisition. A knowledge interpretation scheme is defined to represent the real facilities and processes data in virtual environment data format. The scheme can then be visualised in virtual manufacturing environments and used for manufacturing planning and control.