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Interview With Mr. Ashish Pujari, GM & VP Digital Supply Chain & Manufacturing – Asia Pacific & Japan at SAP

Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News is pleased to conduct an interview with  Mr. Ashish Pujari, GM & VP Digital Supply Chain & Manufacturing – Asia Pacific & Japan at SAP on his views on the future of supply chain networks and manufacturing technologies.

1.Could you provide us with an overview of the latest technologies shaping the manufacturing industry and its associated supply chain networks in Asia?

Manufacturing has already begun to go ‘smart’ with Industry 4.0, where we see automation, intelligent machines coupled with smart sensors and IoT devices embedded along the production line. The future of production will not only be fully automated and connected but also have the ability to self-diagnose issues and optimise production capability. In this regard we see the possibility of an automated end-to-end supply chain, fully managed by smart manufacturing robots, driverless cars/drones and digital shop assistants.

With the tremendous volume of data becoming available, manufacturers will be able to optimise operations quickly and react accordingly to areas that require attention. For instance, the need to regularly conduct machinery maintenance, which typically causes a halt in production and incur cost, is no longer required with smart sensors notifying operators when maintenance is needed.

What sets the manufacturing and supply chain advancement rate of Asia apart from the other regions is the amount of expected IoT investment with IoT playing the critical role in making the above initiatives possible. According to IDC, Asia comes up on top in terms of IoT spending (US$291.7 billion) having accounted for more than 40 percent of the total worldwide expenditure this year with these connected devices being largely used for manufacturing operations.

2. What do you think are the main challenges when it comes to the digitalisation and integration of supply chains with manufacturing processes in Asia? With the digitalisation of manufacturing, how will supply chains evolve to keep up? How do you think these challenges can be overcome?

Traditionally, companies approached supply chain management in terms of increasing efficiency and driving down costs. In a complex, globalised, digital economy, the supply chain of yesterday is not up to the task of meeting constantly shifting demand and increasingly complex supply networks. For a digital economy, what is needed is a digital supply chain that is characterised by its ability to be fast, nimble and intelligent enough to profitably serve segments of one. This is however, just one half of the picture with the other half being the demand chain

Industry 4.0 solutions and new manufacturing techniques (such as addictive manufacturing) play a strong role in sustaining a strong demand chain where the production of products is based solely on demand. The decrease in waste and obsolescence will lead to an overall reduction in cost for organisations.

Upon digitalising the supply and demand chain silos, the main challenge will be to connect the both of them in a seamless manner. The integration of demand and supply chain synchronizes the key processes in terms of front-end development, product planning, product design, procurement, manufacturing, sales and marketing, maintenance activities based on customer needs as process routines. The first step manufacturers must take is the establishment of a digital core in order to handle the tremendous volume of data becoming available and translate them into actionable insights. Next, a top-to-bottom, soup-to-nuts approach that brings each application under the same umbrella must be taken. This is typically done with the assistance of a technology solutions provider that offers solutions for both silos and a proven track record of successful implementation.

3. In your opinion, what are the trends that will shape the industry for the next 5 to 10 years?

Supply chain sustainability becomes good business:  Cost efficiency and sustainability can now be achieved simultaneously with the help of technology. In an ideal world, manufacturers will see all of their products end up in a customer’s hands. In reality, the overproduction of products leads to unwanted and unused products being dumped at the bottom of a landfill. By digitalising the supply chain, manufacturers will be able to increase sustainability by reducing or even eliminating over-production and standing inventory. Not only does this reduce overall cost, it also saves our environment. At the same time, having end-to-end visibility enables businesses to tap on the shared economy network and achieve seamless connectivity across the entire supply chain. For example, working with third-party delivery services to cover last-mile delivery.

Rise of the Intelligence Enterprise: To reap the benefits of Industry 4.0 fully, we expect to see more organisations transforming into Intelligent Enterprises. An Intelligent Enterprise effectively uses data assets and machine learning to automate routine tasks, to achieve desired business outcomes faster and with less risk. To this end, businesses need to invest in three key areas – an intelligent suite, intelligent technologies and a digital platform. SAP’s solutions are designed to help businesses leverage these and transform into an a smart, best-run Intelligent Enterprise.

Connecting the physical and digital world through Digital Twins: The attachment of IoT sensors to assets and equipment will enable organisations to connect them within a network and form “digital twins”. This will provide businesses total visibility as products are designed, manufactured and deployed with real-time data sharing between customers and suppliers.

In today’s context, this is important because businesses are facing increased competition and need to meet the expectation of shorter product cycles, accelerated responses times and flexible manufacturing. At the same time, customers expect fully configurable, smart products too. Through leveraging embedded intelligence from the data of a fully connected network, businesses will be able to make better decisions and break new ground with open innovation.

Blockchain goes mainstream: Blockchain can positively impact everything from warehousing to delivery to payment due to its ability to increase the efficiency and transparency of supply chains. There is no dispute in the chain regarding transactions because all entities on the chain have the same version of the ledger and records on the blockchain cannot be edited. Due to such offerings, it comes as no surprise when IDC predicted that blockchain spending will grow at a CAGR of 81.2 percent and hit a total spending of US$9.2 billion in 2021.

Delving deeper into the distribution and services sector, we foresee strong interest from the pharmaceutical industry in the adoption of blockchain. Fake drugs are a US$30 billion problem and according to the World Health Organisation, one in 10 drugs sold in developing countries are fake or substandard, leading to thousands of deaths. Bogus drugs are a growing threat as increased pharmaceutical trade, including Internet sales, open the door to sometimes toxic products. With blockchain, the flow of stolen or counterfeit pills entering the supply chain and causing harm to patients can be stopped.

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Interview With Mr. Vincent Tang, Regional Vice President of Asia in Epicor

Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News is pleased to conduct an interview with Mr. Vincent Tang, Regional Vice President of Asia in Epicor on his views on Industry 4.0 megatrends in Southeast Asia.

1. In your opinion, what are the top three megatrends that are shaping Industry 4.0 in Southeast Asia?

Industry 4.0 is a hot topic in Southeast Asia, North Asia as well as regions outside of Asia such as the U.S. The term originated in Germany and is known by different names globally. For example, in China it is known as “Made In China 2025” and in the U.S it is known as smart manufacturing.

The trends shaping Industry 4.0 does not just involve ERP systems, it involves manufacturing execution systems, the extraction of data and its translation into meaningful information, big data, product lifecycle management (PLM) and the integration of robotics into processes. This means that Industry 4.0 is a long journey and companies begin their journeys at different points. For example, some companies may begin first with the implementation of an ERP system while others may not.

In Southeast Asia, Industry 4.0 is encouraged by government support through means such as grants and funding. This has allowed the region to advance in terms of the manufacturing technologies.

2. What are the key challenges that prevent manufacturers in Southeast Asia from digitalising and integrating artificial intelligence as well as data science into their manufacturing processes?

Retaining and attracting talent is the top challenge that prevents manufacturers from digitalising. In factories that are not fully automated, factors such as the increased amount of paperwork and high surrounding temperatures and harsh external environments may contribute to staff turnovers.

Additionally, the integrated implementation of automation is a challenge to some manufacturers in the region. This can occur because manufacturers may implement automation as a phase by phase process instead of as an integrated solution. For example, the accountancy department may be automated first before the inventory control department is automated.

Finally, manufacturers may find it challenging to successfully implement ERP systems. This could be because the successful implementation of ERP systems involves more than one key user, as it is a team effort. One that involves more than monetary investments and individual contributions. For mid-market companies, they possess limited ERP resources and budgets for ERP implementation and also require ERP systems to be installed in a short period of time – typically within six to nine months. These companies also tend to require flexibility.

3. How do you suggest that the above challenges be solved?

Departments can be integrated to increase the opportunities for rapid decision making and for different issues to be highlighted.

Productivity can also be increased due to the shortage of labour globally, especially in China which is also the largest manufacturer in the world. Although labour costs in China used to be lower, factors such as the one child policy has caused labour shortages and increased labour costs. While in Southeast Asia labour shortages are less severe and labour costs are cheaper, as in the case of countries such as Vietnam, Indonesia and Thailand.

Overall, the solution that is applied needs to be an integrated end to end solution. For example, processes that range from manufacturing to scheduling to finances have to be integrated. The solution that is applied has to also be multi-dimensional, multi-language based and focused on multi-localisation. This is because of the differing regulations in different countries that would require localised solutions to cater to it.

4. In 5 to 10 years time, how do you think the manufacturing industry in Southeast Asia will evolve?

The industry will continue to grow. This is because of the China-US trade war, as a lot of manufacturing companies are considering subcontracting their manufacturing operations to countries outside of China, such as Vietnam, to overcome restrictions when it comes to exporting to the U.S. This can be seen in the case of South Korean manufacturer, Samsung, which has moved its operations to Vietnam.

Thus, in Southeast Asia, manufacturing will continue to grow and this will be facilitated by Industry 4.0 and infrastructural developments such as the Belt and Road Initiative that will connect Bangkok and China via a high speed train.

5. What are your thoughts on the Industrial Transformation Asia Pacific event? Do you think this is the right time for an event like this?

The event occurred at just the right time. Different countries are at different stages of their development and the delegates that attend the event are keen to find out how they can engage in Industry 4.0 and where they are in their journeys towards Industry 4.0.

The event has also attracted over 1,800 registrations and I am able to meet a lot of individuals from Indonesia, Thailand and China. Everybody is working around the concept of industrial automation and it involves areas such as PLM, big data, manufacturing execution systems (MES), robotics, ERPs and integrated solutions.

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EuroBLECH 2018: Trumpf Showcases Autonomous Factory And Logistical Innovations

EuroBLECH 2018: Trumpf Showcases Autonomous Factory And Logistical Innovations

GERMANY: Trumpf will be showcasing numerous solutions for autonomous factories at EuroBLECH 2018 in Hannover. The company is set to present a range of digitally connected applications for sheet metal processing that are designed to make manufacturing processes simpler and more efficient. “As they become increasingly autonomous, our machines are taking on more tasks and making life easier for the people who work with them. But you can only unlock these benefits with a connected, intelligent production environment. That’s what enables us to achieve productivity gains and secure our customers’ competitive edge – and artificial intelligence is the key,” says Heinz-Jürgen Prokop, Chief Executive Officer Machine Tools at Trumpf. Prokop notes that there is now little to be gained by striving for ever higher laser power. Instead, the focus should be on connected machines and the processes that occur upstream and downstream from the actual production process. Combined with intelligent data analysis, he argues that this is where the biggest productivity gains can be achieved.

Assistance Systems Makes Processes More Reliable

Trumpf has already laid the foundations for the autonomous factory by including numerous assistance systems in its machines. One example that makes cutting processes more reliable is Smart Collision Prevention. This function’s programming already takes account of tilting parts and then develops a processing strategy in its calculations to avoid collisions with the cutting head. More and more machine functions now control processes autonomously. One example is Smart Nozzle Automation, a function that periodically inspects the nozzle and automatically replaces it if it is damaged. And that’s not the only milestone on the path toward autonomous laser cutting that Trumpf is showcasing at this year’s EuroBLECH in Hannover.

Self-Learning Machines

The fully automatic TruLaser Center 7030 laser system takes the whole concept of autonomous machines to the next level. From programming to part sorting, everything it does is completely automated. “We’ve already started using intelligent data analysis to improve the processes executed by this machine. By incorporating customer feedback in the form of data, our aim is to steadily perfect the entire system. Artificial intelligence is the next stage of Industry 4.0,” says Thomas Schneider, who heads up machine tool development at Trumpf. A good example is the machine’s unloading unit. The pins that lift the sheet out of the scrap skeleton are designed to ensure efficient and reliable part removal using suction cups. If the pins fail to get it right the first time around, the machine initiates a new part removal cycle on its own, without requiring any intervention. It then repeats this cycle as many times as necessary until it works. The machine processes and assimilates each of these retry attempts and learns from them.

Smart Factory, Intelligent Logistics

Trumpf will also be presenting a connected intra-logistics solution at EuroBLECH, something that Trumpf has already tested successfully at its Industry 4.0 showcase factory and at selected customer locations. The solution improves the logistics processes that run on the shop floor, for example the routing of parts from one processing station to the next. “Customers participating in our product testing program have sometimes made five-figure savings by deploying our indoor localisation system,” said Schneider. “It enables them to reduce search times and prioritise jobs in an intelligent fashion.” This is steadily becoming more important because batch sizes are shrinking and sheet metal fabricators are increasingly struggling to keep track of jobs throughout the entire production process. At the same time, the sheet metal fabricators’ customers want to know what stage their order has reached, which is a level of transparency they have come to expect from doing business online. The indoor localisation system enables customers to manage their production processes more efficiently and satisfy their own customers’ expectations.

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EuroBLECH 2018 Launches In Hannover

EuroBLECH 2018 Launches In Hannover

GERMANY: EuroBLECH 2018, the 25th International Sheet Metal Working Technology Exhibition, has opened its doors at the Hannover Exhibition Centre in Germany. Until Friday, the 26th October 2018, a total of 1,507 exhibitors from 40 countries will present the latest technologies along the entire sheet metal processing chain. With a net exhibition space of 89,875 square metres, this year’s EuroBLECH has further grown in exhibition space by 2,000 square metres, compared to the last event in 2016.

This year, 58% of exhibitors at EuroBLECH come from outside Germany. The percentage of international exhibiting companies has thus increased by a further 4% with the biggest exhibitor countries coming from Germany, Italy, China, Turkey, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, Denmark, the USA and Austria.

For this year’s 25th edition of EuroBLECH, the main topics are Industry 4.0, big data and digitalisation. These new trends and developments offer advantages in terms of new business approaches, streamlining and simplifying processes as well as the improvement of productivity and efficiency. Therefore, the organisers, Mack Brooks Exhibitions, have chosen the motto ‘Step into the digital reality’ as the overall theme of EuroBLECH 2018. Visitors can expect the most comprehensive technology range in terms of industrial digitalisation of sheet metal working at the show this year.

EuroBLECH will also present the entire sheet metal working technology chain, ranging from high tech systems to conventional machinery. This covers sheet metal, semi-finished and finished products, handling, separation, forming, flexible sheet metal working, joining, welding and surface treatment, processing of hybrid structures, tools, additive manufacturing, quality control, CAD/CAM/CIM systems and R&D. The show attracts sheet metal working specialists at all management levels in small and medium-sized companies as well as in large enterprises. Visitors include design engineers, production managers, quality managers, buyers, manufacturers, technical directors and experts from associations and R&D.

EuroBLECH Awards Ceremony

The winners of the EuroBLECH Online Competition ‘Step into the digital reality’ will receive their prizes at the official awards ceremony. The ceremony will take place on Wednesday 24th October 2018, at 14.00 hrs, in Hall 16, Stand C51. Prizes will be awarded in the following three categories: Digital Transformation, Best Start-Up and E-Mobility.

More information on EuroBLECH can be found at: www.euroblech.com.

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Hitachi & Microsoft’s Connected Field Service Solutions Showcased At The Industrial Transformation APAC Conference

Hitachi & Microsoft’s Connected Field Service Solutions Showcased At The Industrial Transformation APAC Conference

SINGAPORE: Hitachi Solutions Asia Pacific, a provider of purpose-built industry solutions powered by Microsoft Cloud, is currently participating at the Industrial Transformation APAC conference which is held from 16 to 18 October, 2018.

The Industrial Transformation APAC conference brings together Asia Pacific’s advanced manufacturing community for the exchange of digital transformation journeys and knowledge. This event will be the platform for more than 10,000 industrial leaders from over 30 countries from the region where they can share insights and best practices on their industrial digital transformation initiatives and network with other thought leaders. And it is through this platform that Hitachi Solutions Asia Pacific will feature the latest field service solutions in partnership with Microsoft.

Currently, Hitachi Solutions Asia Pacific delivers field service solutions that are designed to help companies realise their digital transformation journey. This enables companies to advance from being a cost centre to a profit centre and develop from being a preventative maintenance model to a predictive maintenance model.

During the event, David Bishop, Senior Vice President and Head of R&D at Hitachi Solutions America, and Tushar Parashar, Senior Sales Director at Hitachi Solutions Asia Pacific, will be demonstrating these solutions that are built on Microsoft Dynamics 365:

  • Hitachi Solutions Extended Field Service helps field service organisations increase customer satisfaction by moving from a costly break and fix model to a more efficient predict and prevent model, increasing first time fix rates. With this service, field service companies willreceive full warranty management and remote asset monitoring capabilities, as well as the ability to streamline processes with enhanced mobile timesheets.
  • Hitachi Solutions IoT Service Hub enables companies to connect and monitor devices and analyse the data in real time to create new predictive maintenance capabilities. Companiescan also use these capabilities to dramatically improve operational efficiencies, which enables them to transform it into data-driven services businesses.
  • Hitachi Solutions’ Augmented Reality Remote Assistance (ARRA) for Field Service enables technicians to use augmented reality and live videosto interact with in-office experts via smart glasses, smart phones or tablets.

“Hitachi Solutions has a long history of success in Field Service Automation. Our services team has more than 14 years of collective experience building and implementing FSA systems for clients in different vertical industries.” said Michael Strand, Senior Vice President of Global Sales & Marketing at Hitachi Solutions America. “Hitachi Solutions Asia Pacific leverages its field services expertise from a more regional perspective and aims to help customers solve business challenges, increase operational efficiency, and improve support and service.”

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Schneider Electric Unveils Smart Manufacturing Solutions At Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific Conference

Schneider Electric Unveils Smart Manufacturing Solutions At Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific Conference

SINGAPORE: Schneider Electric has unveiled its latest smart manufacturing solutions for the Asia-Pacific region during the launch of the Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific Conference (ITAP) on 16 October 2018. This builds upon the company’s history in Singapore that began 40 years ago and which saw the company launch its East Asia and Japan headquarters in Singapore.

Mr David Orgaz, Senior Vice President, Process Automation, Schneider Electric Asia-Pacific has commented that, “Schneider Electric is at the forefront of helping companies in their digital transformation journey. Using cutting-edge Industry 4.0 technology, our customers can make informed, data-driven decisions that bring about improved profitability, operational efficiency and a smarter productive workforce – while keeping the operations secure and environmentally sustainable.”

During the ITAP, Schneider Electric will also be showcasing simulations of next-generation Control Command Centres in Oil & Gas, Digital Factory, Consumer Packaged Goods and Water & Wastewater environments and this includes:

EcoStruxure Machine Advisor

Machine builders sell machines to smart factories around the world. These machines are typically deployed with annual maintenance contracts. Thus with this technology, machine builders can track, monitor and even fix remotely deployed IoT-enabled machines from a single dashboard.

Similarly, smart factory operators can gain a bird’s eye view of all their running machines, be instantly alerted if any machine is not operational and analyse collected data in real-time to see if the machines are performing up to par.

EcoStruxure Augmented Operator Advisor

On-site operators can speed up machine maintenance and reduce human error by using augmented reality (AR) to view superimposed data over the different parts of the machines.

By simply holding an AR-powered tablet over the machine, the operator can instantly view data relevant to each machine part.

EcoStruxure Profit Advisor

This IoT-based solution lets companies measure the profitability of their industrial operations, by considering both historical data and real-time data analytics.

EcoStruxure Profit Advisor helps businesses to concentrate and refine efforts which provide the greatest financial returns and savings, predict the profitability of the change processes and minimise potential project risks while eliminating waste.

EcoStruxure Triconex Tricon CX v11.4

The EcoStruxure Tricon CX helps industries achieve safe and available production while improving output and profitability. It is quick and easy to install, configure and operate. This in turn reduces customers’ total cost of ownership by up to 8 percent with its triple redundant, high-availability architecture, inherent redundancy management, online module replacement and change/modification capabilities. It is also proven to help process manufacturers increase ROI by 11 percent.

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Bright Start For Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific

Bright Start For Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific

SINGAPORE: Industrial Transformation ASIA-PACIFIC  a HANNOVER MESSE event, which takes place from 16 to 18 October 2018 at Singapore EXPO, opens today with strong participation from global technology and solution providers. More than 260 companies from 22 countries are showcasing their products, services and solutions to visitors from around the Asia-Pacific region. The exhibition features four main display areas – Additive Manufacturing, Digital Factory, Industrial Automation, and Smart Logistics – as well as national pavilions from Germany, India, Japan, Malaysia, and Singapore. 14 industry-leading enterprises are supporting the premiere, including Accenture, SAP, Schneider Electric and Siemens as founding partners.

Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies, was the Guest-of-Honour at the Opening Ceremony. Over the course of the three-day event, the conference at Industrial Transformation ASIA-PACIFIC will cover a suite of business and leadership topics, as well as technology domains, case studies, and panel discussions. Under the overarching theme “Getting Real with the Business of Industry 4.0”, more than 100 industry experts from 15 countries will share insights on domains such as industrial transformation, the Industrial Internet, additive manufacturing, and standards. Conference speakers include Dr. Gunther Kegel (Chief Executive Officer, Pepperl + Fuchs); Samuel Garcia (Vice President for Global Consumer Product Supply, Procter & Gamble Asia Pacific), Dr. Armin Bruck (Regional Chief Executive Officer, Siemens Germany), Dr. Hamid Mughal (Global Manufacturing Director, Rolls-Royce), and Mark Hennebicque (Strategist, Additive Manufacturing & Simulation).

The opening plenary on 16 October featured a dialogue with Ministers and experts from Asia to discuss regional macro-economic perspectives and frameworks for Industry 4.0 initiatives. The ministerial-level panel included His Excellency Airlangga Hartarto (Minister of Industry, Indonesia), Chan Chun Sing (Minister for Trade and Industry, Singapore), Dr. Gunther Kegel (Chief Executive Officer, Pepperl + Fuchs) and Vincent Chong (President and Chief Executive Officer, ST Engineering).

Aloysius Arlando, Chief Executive Officer of SingEx Holdings, said, “The inaugural edition of Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific is the culmination of a year-long effort between SingEx and our international partner Deutsche Messe. It is born out of our shared vision to provide a curated platform for our region’s Industry 4.0 market needs, through offering engaging and personalised programmes to address national, industry and enterprise agendas. The event is poised to generate significant economic benefits for Asia Pacific as it plays a role in catalysing deepened cross-industry collaboration, investments and trade exchanges among players in the manufacturing, manufacturing-related and digital communities of our region; and enhancing competitiveness.”

Dr. Jochen Köckler, Chief Executive Officer of Deutsche Messe AG, said, “Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific comes at a time where technologies such as big data, cobots, additive manufacturing, artificial intelligence, and augmented reality are redefining manufacturing processes and global supply chains. ASEAN is a promising growth market for our customers. With a population of roughly 650 million, it has the third largest work force in the world and boasts a strong manufacturing base. Singapore is the perfect location for Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific thanks to its excellent infrastructure, advanced manufacturing capabilities and a strong focus on engineering, R&D and innovation.”

The Learning Journey: Industrial transformation – step by step

Economies in the Asia-Pacific region are at different stages of industrial transformation, some not yet fully appreciating the advantages of Industry 4.0. For this reason, Industrial Transformation ASIA-PACIFIC features a “Learning Journey” that guides participants through the process systematically. Highlights include the “Gateway to Industry 4.0 – powered by TÜV SÜD”, which visually introduces visitors to industrial transformation, gets them thinking about their own organisations’ state of readiness, and offers ideas for how to get started. The Sandbox hosts more than 50 complimentary, industry-specific talks in a casual format that sparks creative ideas and facilitates peer-to-peer conversations. Two Learning Labs, one for Smart Logistics and one for Cobots, show technology in action and inspire collaborative thinking. The Interchange Studio plugs attendees into an online community, encouraging dialogue on topics of shared interest after the event. A series of technical visits hosted by selected exhibitors demonstrate various advanced manufacturing facilities and innovation centres to deepen understanding and learning. More than 20 student delegations from institutes of higher learning as well as more than 15 industry trade delegations and workers’ unions are participating in Industrial Transformation ASIA-PACIFIC.

Industrial Transformation ASIA-PACIFIC is organised by SingEx Exhibitions, with Deutsche Messe as international partner assisting with brand development, as well as global sales and marketing. SingEx and Deutsche Messe expect more than 10,000 attendees at the event’s debut.

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TÜV SÜD Rallies For Smart Manufacturing In Singapore

TÜV SÜD Rallies For Smart Manufacturing In Singapore

MUNICH/SINGAPORE: Global figures show that Industry 4.0 has the potential to increase annual revenues by up to US$1.5 trillion in value to the global economy by 2022 and enable a seven fold increase in overall productivity. Meanwhile, in January 2018, the World Economic Forum identified Singapore as one of the countries best positioned to benefit from advancements in manufacturing and smart factories.

Speaking at the inaugural Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific (ITAP) conference which is a Hannover Messe event taking place in Singapore this week, Dr. Andreas Hauser, Director, Digital Service Centre of Excellence, TÜV SÜD said: “With the right approach, the positive impact of Industry 4.0 could be tremendous, particularly in markets like Singapore, where manufacturing accounts for a fifth of GDP and 400,000 jobs. However, many companies we spoke to find it hard to formulate an Industry 4.0 roadmap which is customised according to their strengths and challenges. They are often overwhelmed by the multitude of technologies in the market and how they can be integrated seamlessly into their infrastructure.” In response to this need, the TÜV SÜD Digital Service Centre of Excellence in Singapore has launched a next-generation Industry 4.0 services portfolio to initiate, scale and sustain manufacturers’ transformation journeys effectively.

This transformation journey comprises three steps and starts with “Initiation”, in which TÜV SÜD assesses the readiness of production facilities to transform using best practice frameworks and tools. A key element is the Smart Industry Readiness Index (“Index”) which was launched by the Singapore Economic Development Board in partnership with TÜV SÜD last year. The “Index” provides companies with a structured and comprehensive approach towards understanding the current state of their manufacturing facilities and assesses their readiness for transformation in the context of Industry 4.0. To date, TÜV SÜD has completed more than 150 assessments with MNCs and SMEs across all industries.

After the initial assessment, TÜV SÜD partners with clients throughout their transformation, offering advice and guidance on how to fill specific gaps, Industry 4.0 roadmaps and business cases for technology implementation, as well as the relevant technical solutions to ensure safe and secure operations. One essential aspect for smart manufacturing is cyber security. Here, TÜV SÜD has set up a “Singapore Sealed Cloud” solution, powered by patented technology that ensures the highest levels of security and the uninterrupted operations of connected systems.

Unveiling the “Gateway to Industry 4.0”, a curated and immersive gallery powered by TÜV SÜD on the evolution and future of Industry 4.0 for ITAP attendees, he added: “As a global organisation furthering its roots in Singapore, we have always found the nation to be open to new ideas and experimentation, making it the perfect place to testbed solutions and industry frameworks. We look forward to partnering with our customers throughout their transformation journeys with our Industry 4.0 portfolio.” Through the Gateway, delegates can participate in a free self-assessment to evaluate their Industry 4.0 readiness and book an optional ten minute consultation with a TÜV SÜD expert to interpret the results.

TÜV SÜD’s Jackie Tan and Dr. Andreas Hauser will be speaking at the Future of Manufacturing Summit (17 October) and the Standards Forum (18 October) respectively. TÜV SÜD will also be showcasing the group’s comprehensive safety and security portfolio for Industry 4.0, additive manufacturing, cyber security and robotics at Singapore Expo hall 1 and 2, Booth F20. Live demos on Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) will be conducted throughout the three days.

For more information, please contact TÜV SÜD at www.tuv-sud.com/itap-2018.

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Universal Robots Encourages Vietnam’s Robotics Development During 25,000 Cobot Milestone

Universal Robots Encourages Vietnam’s Robotics Development During 25,000 Cobot Milestone

SINGAPORE: Universal Robots (UR), the pioneer and market leader in collaborative robots (cobots), has cemented its market leadership after hitting 25,000 cobot sales.

To celebrate this significant milestone, the company awarded ten of its 25,000 global customers a Gold Edition cobot. The lucky winner in Southeast Asia is Vietnam’s Vinacomin Motor Industry Joint Stock Company (VMIC), which was presented with the UR10 cobot on 9 October 2018. The special edition cobot has the joints painted in a rich, gold-coloured finish, a refreshing take on UR’s iconic blue and grey cobots.

Based in Vietnam’s Quang Ninh province, VMIC is engaged in the manufacture, assembly, maintenance and repair of transportation vehicles. The Company’s leading products are heavy duty trucks used in the delivery of mining products, together with light trucks and other utility vehicles. Other business activities include the production of automotive parts, industrial machinery and equipment trading, the construction of industrial and civil infrastructure, as well as the provision of technical consulting services.

“We are thrilled to receive the Gold Edition UR10 cobot which will be deployed to assist in the production of parts for transport vehicles, working alongside our employees,” said Pham Xuan Phi, VMIC Chairman and CEO.

“The need to improve productivity and reduce operational cost led us to opt for cobots as the ideal solution. Since deploying our first cobot in July this year, we have already seen productivity surge 30 per cent and improvements in product quality and takt time stability,” he added.

“We couldn’t have reached this historic 25,000-cobot landmark without excellent customers like VMIC,” said Sakari Kuikka, APAC Regional Director of UR. “With this, we celebrate not just the success of UR in empowering customers, but also the successes of our customers in innovating and changing their workplace with cobots. The Gold Edition cobot reflects our continued commitment towards making the unlimited potential of robotics accessible for all.”

Present in Vietnam since 2016, UR distributes cobots through local distributor and system integrator partners – Servo Dynamics Engineering and Tan Phat Automation JSC. Cobots are deployed in multiple industries including automotive, electronics, textile, footwear and food processing sectors.

Robotics Key to Vietnam’s Industry 4.0 Journey

Vietnam has identified robotics as one of the pillars of Industry 4.0 as automation becomes integral for businesses to remain competitive. However, 82 percent of Vietnamese businesses have yet to take steps to prepare for Industry 4.0 while just 10 percent are ready. Furthermore, a report by the Ministry of Industry and Trade showed that interest among enterprises to invest and apply new technologies was still modest.

Acknowledging this, the government has been aggressively focusing on developing initiatives and legislation to speed progress in the era. Among the efforts are the 2011 – 2020 Strategy for Science and Technology Development to enhance economic competitiveness and speed up industrialisation, prioritising the importance of industrial robots and hi-tech automation.

The government has also identified other measures including collaborations between technology enterprises and science & technology organisations to consult and support local firms as appropriate steps to ensure the successful acceptance of robotic opportunities.

The Vietnamese economy is one of the fastest growing in the world. The country recorded a 6.8 per cent increase in GDP last year on the back of a humming manufacturing sector. The economy in 2017 was worth VND5 quadrillion (USD223 billion).

Cobot Adoption Rising

Cobots are now the fastest-growing segment of industrial automation, expected to jump tenfold to 34 percent of all industrial robot sales by 2025, according to the International Federation of Robotics.

The automotive and electronics industries are big users of cobots globally. The market value for cobots in the global automotive industry was USD23.5 million (547 billion dong) in 2015 and is projected to reach USD 470 million (10 trillion dong) by 2021, at a CAGR of 64.67 percent between 2015 and 2021. Electronics is the second largest cobot integrator, accounting for 18 per cent of global demand in 2015. By 2021, electronics is forecast to invest approximately USD 480 million (11 trillion dong) in cobots.

Since the sale of the first cobot in December 2008, UR cobots have been utilised in various industries ranging from food production to scientific research, taking on tasks that include industrial assembly, pick and place and even quality inspections. Today, UR is the unrivaled cobot market leader with a 60 percent global share, selling more cobots than all other robot makers combined.

Unlike conventional robotic solutions, UR’s cobots are designed to work hand-in-hand with operators with maximum efficiency, opening up more opportunities for human-robot collaboration in the workplace. These highly versatile cobots can take on a wide spectrum of tasks and have the fastest payback time in the industry, making them a viable option for small-scale businesses where conventional options may be too expensive.

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Siemens To Showcase Sector-Specific Solutions And Future Technologies For Industry 4.0

Siemens To Showcase Sector-Specific Solutions And Future Technologies For Industry 4.0

At the “SPS IPC Drives” 2018, Siemens will be presenting a range of sector-specific solutions and future technologies to enable the digital transformation of today’s discrete and process industries. The central focus of the over 4,000 square meter Siemens booth will be on new products, solutions and services from the company’s Digital Enterprise portfolio, designed to enable the merger between the physical and digital worlds. The solutions on show will allow not only machine and plant builders but also end customers of any size – working in areas as diverse as the chemical, aerospace, battery, food and beverage industries – to boost the flexibility, efficiency, quality, security and speed of their operations. To get to grips with the rising complexity of production processes and leverage the many associated benefits, Siemens is continuously expanding and strengthening its portfolio with the integration of groundbreaking future technologies, from artificial intelligence to edge computing.

As this year’s trade fair slogan “Digital Enterprise – Implement now!” intimates, the technical conditions are already in place for Industry 4.0 in the form of end-to-end solutions along the entire value chain. Driving these developments are an ever-increasing degree of customisation and the resulting rapid transformation of markets. A wide range of innovations and an array of concrete applications and customer examples from fields including additive manufacturing and robot integration will be on show to demonstrate how digital transformation can be successfully achieved in practice for companies of every size and from every sector of the industry. These will also include the opportunities and scope opened up by artificial intelligence. Siemens will also be showcasing Industrial Edge, a distributed data processing concept operating at the machine and production process level as the ideal supplement to cloud computing with MindSphere. Edge applications offer user benefits such as the analysis of machine data for the predictive prevention of machine downtimes, ultimately resulting in improved plant productivity.

Implementation of the Digital Enterprise in machine building
A machine used for the quality inspection of bottles will be illustrating ways in which the Digital Enterprise can be implemented in the machine building sector. The Digital Enterprise enables the seamless integration of industrial software and automation by using a shared data model. This holistic approach will be demonstrated along the entire value chain from the perspective of the machine builder: from the machine concept and simulation through engineering, commissioning and operation to services. Using digital twins of the product, the production process and performance, users benefit from shorter engineering and production times, from flexible, fully automated manufacturing concepts and efficient processes. At the same time, this technology provides the assurance of high quality and adherence to strict security standards. And in turn, connection to MindSphere enables the continuous acquisition and analysis of machine data. This not only ensures increased machine productivity in running operation, but also enables the gathered data to be fed back into the digital machine model,  enabling further optimisation. On the basis of the gathered data, machine builders are also able to develop new services and business models such as “pay per use” concepts.

Modular production creates more flexibility
For sectors such as the pharmaceutical or fine chemical industries to remain competitive, their ability to respond rapidly to changing market demands is growing ever more important. Modular production plants which are made up of flexibly combinable modules and equipped with MTPs (Module Type Packages) are one way of addressing this need. The use of standardised interfaces and protocols enables these “smart” machines and subsystems to be simply integrated into a complete plant. This allows production to be rapidly stepped up by the integration of additional modules. Just how this works in practice will be demonstrated at the booth using the example of a centrifugal separator from the company, GEA, which has been equipped with a dedicated controller and MTPs, enabling its simple integration into a higher-level control system.

New features for MindSphere
Siemens will also be showcasing a range of new features for its cloud-based IoT operating system MindSphere – from visualisation through data analysis to edge computing functions. This year’s MindSphere Lounge will also be showcasing the wide-ranging application possibilities offered by the IoT operating system to improve factors such as efficiency and productivity. For the first time, customers and partners will be jointly presenting new applications and successful use cases taken from practice across a wide-range of different industry sectors.

Services for the digital transformation
Digital Services (Digital Industry Services) play a key role when it comes to customised, individual implementation of the Digital Enterprise. Siemens provides broad-based support for users here with everything from consulting on to implementation and data analysis with all the associated customer benefits such as lowering downtimes by up to 45 percent and energy consumption by up to 60 percent.

Electrical power distribution in digital environments
The smooth interaction of hardware and software with systematic data management is vital to create the efficient electrical power distribution digital enterprises require. At the trade fair, Siemens will be showcasing the integration of medium and low voltage power distribution into cloud-based environments based on concrete applications such as substations, industrial plants, data centers, office buildings and distributed real estate assets. Providing the technical basis are communication-capable switchboards, protection, switching and measuring devices, which gather the relevant energy data, integrate it into holistic energy efficiency concepts and make it available in MindSphere or other cloud platforms. This not only results in a significant increase in energy efficiency and plant availability, but also helps optimise operational and maintenance workflows and simplifies the entire value creation process.

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