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A*STAR And Arcstone Open S$18M Joint Lab To Accelerate Digital Manufacturing In Singapore

A*STAR And Arcstone open S$18M Joint Lab To Accelerate Digital Manufacturing In Singapore

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and local manufacturing software company Arcstone opened a joint laboratory at A*STAR’s Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Centre (ARTC) to develop smart manufacturing solutions to help businesses speed up digital transformation to make operations more efficient, effective, and sustainable. Minister for Trade and Industry Mr Gan Kim Yong graced the joint lab’s opening.

This era of Industry 4.0 allows for real-time extraction and monitoring of operational data, as well as the ability to control machines digitally and remotely. Today’s manufacturing execution systems (MES) face limits, however, such as in the optimisation of production processes. Against this backdrop, A*STAR and Arcstone will collaborate to give today’s MES added intelligence – or “adding a brain to the body”, as Arcstone says.

With a total investment of S$18 million over three years, the A*STAR-Arcstone joint lab will transform Arcstone’s existing solutions into a next-generation MES suite. The MES will incorporate technologies such as artificial intelligence and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) to help manufacturers make better decisions – through visualisation, control, optimisation, and sustainability. For example, the MES will not only provide information about what is happening in a production process in real time but also recommend ways to improve that process, such as by optimising production scheduling.

Manufacturers, including local SMEs, will be able to tap on these smart manufacturing solutions to increase manufacturing transparency and improve production scheduling across the supply chain, paving the way for more competitive and robust supply chains. The solutions will also help manufacturers go green by enabling them to optimise energy usage. The joint lab will place special emphasis on the user-interface for the MES, making it easy to configure and use, especially for first-timers. The joint lab will work on projects in the following areas:

  1. Improve production through real-time visibility
  2. Control production using IIoT technologies
  3. Optimise production using simulation and artificial intelligence
  4. Make production greener through data and optimisation

Collaborating with A*STAR will help Arcstone halve the time needed for its own R&D to achieve its goals. The joint lab aims to create about 30 engineering jobs over the next three years.

Professor Alfred Huan, Assistant Chief Executive, Science and Engineering Research Council, A*STAR, said, “The challenging economic environment sends a reminder to many companies of the constant need for innovation to stay competitive. At A*STAR, we collaborate with companies such as Arcstone to help them build new capabilities to move up the value chain. Such public-private partnerships continue to play an important role in encouraging businesses to adopt technologies to differentiate themselves from the competition. This collaboration with Arcstone is also an example of how local SMEs can deploy their new solutions to help other local SMEs speed up digital transformation in their factories, driving increased digitalisation across the board.”

Mr Willson Deng, Chief Executive Officer, Arcstone, said, “Our goal with the joint lab is to rapidly produce cutting-edge technology to give SMEs and global manufacturers a leg up in efficiency, productivity, and most importantly, long-term sustainability and environmental competitiveness. We are confident about achieving this goal, for we have in ARTC a trusted R&D partner that will bring us results – we know this from years of collaboration with ARTC’s scientists and engineers.”


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Bosch Rexroth, Siemens Joins Sodick, PBA Group In JID’s Advanced Manufacturing Ecosystem

Bosch Rexroth, Siemens Joins Sodick, PBA Group in JID’s Advanced Manufacturing Ecosystem

​Jurong Innovation District (JID) is fast gaining traction as a one-stop advanced manufacturing campus clustering researchers, technology and training providers, and factories of the future. Industry 4.0 champions such as Agency for Science, Technology and Research’s (A*STAR) Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology and National Metrology Centre, Bosch Rexroth, ISDN, Flowserve and Siemens are setting up their facilities in JID, joining A*STAR’s Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Centre (ARTC), McKinsey Digital Capability Centre, PBA Group, Sodick Singapore Techno Centre and Shimano as part of JID’s Advanced Manufacturing ecosystem.

Masterplanned to house the full manufacturing value chain, advanced manufacturers in JID can leverage on the growing ecosystem of R&D, training and capability development, and technology expertise to collaborate and grow together. For example, Siemens will set up their first-of-its-kind Advance Manufacturing Transformation Centre (AMTC) to support the digitalisation and transformation of manufacturing facilities in ASEAN. The AMTC will showcase state-of-the-art Siemens digital enterprise solutions, such as tools to create digital twin facility models to simulate and evaluate its operations in a real manufacturing environment. AMTC will also house Siemens’ first Additive Manufacturing Experience Centre (AMEC) outside Germany, where companies can experience an end-to-end additive manufacturing production line with Siemens’ technology partners.

“The advanced manufacturing ecosystem in JID is shaping up very well. We are happy to see a campus with a growing ecosystem of researchers, technology and training providers to support the adoption of advanced manufacturing solutions in Singapore. The campus will not only benefit Singapore’s industries, but has the potential to serve the region at a time when technology is transforming the manufacturing sector. We hope the JID community can grow collectively to become leaders in advanced manufacturing,” said Ng Lang, CEO of JTC.

Raimund Klein, Head of Siemens Digital Industries ASEAN, said, “JID presents itself as an attractive location for the setup of Siemens’ first Additive Manufacturing Experience Centre (AMEC) outside of Germany. The anchoring of players in a common space will allow us to better support manufacturing facilities on their journey of adoption, transition and transformation towards advanced manufacturing.”

Bosch Rexroth Regional Training centre in JID will administer a standardised training programme following the AHK (German Chamber of Industry and Commerce) framework, to expose manufacturers with the application of Industry 4.0 technologies and practices. Bosch Rexroth will also collaborate with companies to testbed Industry 4.0 projects at the Centre to support implementation of solutions and develop companies’ expertise in the process.

A key feature of JID that resonates well with global manufacturers is its strong sustainability theme in its development blueprint. Set in a natural environment, the district targets 40% green coverage with parks, lush greenery and biodiversity for the community, while an 11km car-free sky corridor with dedicated lanes for pedestrians, cyclists and autonomous shuttles aims to support a car-lite environment. Its underground logistics network—the first in Singapore—will reduce traffic congestion by moving heavy vehicles underground. The district cooling system and estate operations centre will monitor and minimise energy consumption across the entire District.

The 600-hectare industrial district strategically located along Singapore’s western manufacturing belt is expected to create over 95,000 new jobs.


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Dassault Systèmes, SIMTech To Promote Industry Digital Transformation And Innovative Manufacturing Capabilities

Dassault Systèmes, SIMTech To Promote Industry Digital Transformation And Innovative Manufacturing Capabilities

SINGAPORE: Dassault Systèmes has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology, A*STAR Research Entities (“SIMTech”) for future collaboration in capability building programmes to promote digital transformation in Singapore’s manufacturing sector. The agreement was signed during SIMTech’s MPTC (Manufacturing Productivity Technology Centre) Annual Conference 2018 on October 5, 2018, aimed at promoting digital transformation and adoption of ‘smart factory’ technologies amongst Singaporean manufacturers.

The programmes will be deployed through the Model [email protected] The Model [email protected] is an actual production environment that allows for experiential experimentation and learning of manufacturing system technologies. It provides a platform for companies to learn, experiment and co-create new technologies for the next-generation factories. Through the partnership, the Model [email protected] will leverage Dassault Systèmes’ industry solution experiences based on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, including digital continuity for manufacturing and the creation of the factory 3DEXPERIENCE twin.

Digital continuity with the 3DEXPERIENCE platform will enable full traceability of the manufacturing operations of the Model [email protected] from planning, monitoring to optimisation. VR (Virtual Reality) capabilities will enable remote monitoring and visit of the Model Factory, allowing real-time decision and collaboration.

The creation of a 3DEXPERIENCE twin of Model [email protected] provides a single source of data across all applications, enables simulation of behaviour of the full production line, and delivers reliable, actionable real-time information and seamless communication throughout the factory.

Through experiential learning with Dassault Systèmes solutions at the Model [email protected], Singaporean manufacturers will gain insights into industrial processes inspired by world innovation leaders.

Masaki Sox Konno, managing director Asia Pacific South, Dassault Systèmes, said, “Beyond providing the advanced technologies for innovation, we see capability building for the industry as the bedrock for effective digital transformation. Through this partnership with SIMTech, we are glad to have the opportunity to provide the Singapore manufacturing industry with digital solutions to test, learn and enable their transformation towards the next generation of factories.”

Dr Lim Ser Yong, executive director of SIMTech, “We are continually looking to leverage global best practices to complement the core Manufacturing Control Tower (MCT) Technology of SIMTech to promote digital transformation in the manufacturing sector. By enhancing the MCT Platform of the Model [email protected] with Dassault Systèmes’ industry solutions, we believe Singaporean manufacturers will elevate their digital capabilities to thrive in Industry 4.0.”


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Using The Force & The STAR

Using The Force & The STAR

APMEN and IAA were granted the opportunity to interview Dr Thomas Liew, executive director, National Metrology Centre; Lee Shih Mean, senior metrologist, National Metrology Centre; Sim Sem Peng, chairman, Malayan Daching; and Elton Tong, service manager, Malayan Daching, on the relationship between Malayan Daching and A*STAR in setting up Singapore’s first 20 MN force measurement facility. By Mark Johnston.

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