©2012 Springer Publishing Co. Inc.  -  Covering the Detroit Auto Industry Since 1933
™ Tech Center News ™
april 2, 2012
GM Now Using LEGO Blocks for 3-D
Visualization Projects – No, Really
go to this week in print
 DETROIT – Problem solving in the automotive and health care industries could soon have a new mantra: There’s a brick for that.
 That’s because General Motors and WellStar Health System, a five-hospital, not-for-profit health system based in Marietta, Ga., created a three-dimensional visualization system using LEGO building blocks to track step-by-step progress on everything from vehicle repairs to patient care.
 GM and WellStar created the system to be more organized and efficient and share what they learned. The ultimate goal is happier customers – whether car owners or hospital patients.
 At GM, the process could reduce by 33 percent the time needed to implement a change that would prevent future warranty repairs.
 “The automotive and healthcare industries may be different, but we face similar challenges,” said Tim Herrick, GM global vehicle chief engineer for trucks, vans and crossovers.
 “If a customer visits a dealership service department, they expect their car to run better afterward, much like a sick or injured person expects to feel better after going to the hospital. 3-D Visualization helps manage both processes more efficiently.”
 3-D Visualization builds on GM’s Problem Resolution Tracking System. If a transmission case breaks on a durability test vehicle, a problem resolution report documents the problem, and its corresponding LEGO block goes on a LEGO board.
 The block color identifies the area on the vehicle and the block size denotes severity; the bigger the block, the bigger the problem. Each block has an identification number and date of discovery, and the board shows its progress from root cause to solution to outcome. 3-D Visualization is applicable to any process that has volume and aging.
General Motors’ Kevin Quinn, Vehicle Engineering Operations manager of Global Crossover Vehicles, works with a three-dimensional visualization system co-developed by GM and WellStar Health System that uses LEGO building blocks.
page 1
page 2
page 3
page 4
page 5
page 6
page 7
page 8