Virtual reality (VR) refers to an immersive, interactive, multi-sensory, viewer-centered, three-dimensional (3D) computer generated environment and the combination of technologies required to build such an environment (Cruz-Neira, 1993). Related to problems of engineering design and manufacturing, this new technology offers engineers the ability to work with computer models in a three-dimensional, immersive environment. This paper describes a virtual reality application where the results of a discrete event simulation of a manufacturing cell are integrated with a virtual model of the cell to produce a virtual environment. The program described in this paper, the VR Factory, allows the user to investigate how various changes to the manufacturing cell affect part production. This investigation is performed while immersed in a computer generated three-dimensional representation of the cell. This paper describes the creation of the VR model of the manufacturing cell, the animation of the environment and the implementation of the results of the discrete event simulation.

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