Sample Projects and Use Cases > Use Case: Scaling Digital Twin Experiences > Digital Twin 101: Introduction to Digital Twins > What is a Digital Twin?
What is a Digital Twin?
By definition, a digital twin is a digital model that virtually represents a physical product, operational process, or task. A digital twin is not just a digital copy of something, though. Each digital twin has data associated with it, and without connected data, you do not have a true digital twin. Digital twins are unique to a specific product, process, or task. This means that if you just have a CAD model of a product, say a quadcopter, then you do not have a digital twin. There are hundreds of thousands of quadcopter drones in the world that all look the same. What then would make the CAD model a true digital twin is when data from one specific physical quadcopter is added to the model. It then has data telling the entire digital thread story of the product.
Augmented reality allows you to take a digital representation of a physical object and place it into the real world for data connectivity, which is what you will learn more about as you go through this series of activities. Digital twins can be accessed by scanning a code, which can come in many different forms, on your mobile/wearable device which will load and prepare the experience for viewing in AR. Examples of things that can be scanned are VuMarks, an image that gets a URL encoded in it, much like a QR code, that can be customized for your company’s logo, ThingMarks, PTC-branded VuMarks that come by default with your Vuforia Studio subscription, bar codes, basic QR codes, or any image that can be serialized with a URL.
In addition to the case described above where there were multiple digital twins for the same model of a physical object, augmented reality also allows for multiple digital twin experiences to be placed inside one AR experience. For example, there could be a single AR experience that has one experience for reading one set of data for an object, and then another experience could be about performing maintenance on that same object. These are just a few short examples of digital twin structures; you will learn much more as you continue to go this tutorial series.
Next, you’ll learn about digital threads.