Investigating Mixed Reality Applications in Building Inspection and Maintenance


  • Salman Azhar McWhorter School of Building Science, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama
  • Abuzar Haroon Key Constructors, Madison, Mississippi
  • Hesham Rabayah Department of Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, Al-Zaytoonah University



Facility management, Building inspection, Maintenance, Mixed reality, HoloLens


Facilities Management (FM) industry is frequently exploring new technologies with the potential to increase efficiency of inspection and maintenance processes of buildings. Mixed Reality (MR), which allows for the blending of real environment with virtual objects and/or information, is one technology that has such potential. The aim of this study is to develop an MR assisted system that can be used to enhance the process of inspection and maintenance of buildings. Three case scenarios were developed as a “proof of concept” to demonstrate the effectiveness of MR technology for inspection and predictive maintenance as compared to the systems already in place. A 3-story academic building was used for deployment and testing. A mixed-methods research design consisting of a questionnaire survey and semi-structured interviews was adopted to collect the user experience data from a selected group of facility technicians, inspectors, and managers. The preliminary results showed that the MR technology has a potential to overcome limitations of the legacy FM systems. Nearly, two-third of the surveyed participants found MR system to be very effective in educating and training facility inspectors and technicians about routine inspection and maintenance tasks. However, several technical limitations were also identified such as MR model drifting during viewing, information access lags, and abrupt crashing of the system. Though limited in scope, this research study built foundations for carrying out a more detailed investigation on the effectiveness of MR technology for the FM industry. It is hoped that the results reported in this paper would be helpful for FM researchers and practitioners who are interested to explore advanced visualization technologies for improving efficacy and efficiency of inspection and maintenance processes.






Academic Papers