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Hyundai Motor And Singtel Collaborate To Advance Singapore’s Smart Mobility Ecosystem And Industry 4.0 Journey

Hyundai Motor And Singtel Collaborate To Advance Singapore’s Smart Mobility Ecosystem And Industry 4.0 Journey

Hyundai Motor Company and Singtel has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to collaborate on a range of ventures to support smart manufacturing, connectivity for electric vehicle battery subscription service. The MOU follows Hyundai Motor Group’s announcement in October 2020 that it is setting up a new state-of-the-art Hyundai Motor Group Innovation Centre Singapore (HMGICS) to conduct studies on future mobility and explore innovative solutions, services and disruptive technologies to revolutionise commuters’ transport experience.

Hyundai Motor will combine its expertise in developing innovative automotive and manufacturing solutions with Singtel’s capabilities in 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), and next generation info-communications technologies and solutions to develop Industry 4.0 advanced digital solutions to   transform the way vehicles are currently manufactured. The parties will develop and pilot a 5G-enabled smart factory use case for HMGICS’ intelligent manufacturing platform, and potentially scaling it up for deployment across Hyundai’s manufacturing plants globally.

“Hyundai is delighted to work with Singtel, implementing next-generation communication solutions that will enhance mobility experiences for our customers,” said Hong Bum Jung, Senior Vice President of HMGICS at Hyundai Motor Company. “We also hope to explore future innovative solutions and business opportunities with Singtel to help realise Singapore’s Smart Nation vision.”

Hyundai and Singtel will also work together on an IoT communications solution for the batteries powering Hyundai’s electric vehicles (EVs) in Singapore. The IoT system enables Hyundai to monitor the telemetry, or automatic data transmission, of the batteries’ real-time status and performance. The data-driven insights can enhance the EVs’ reliability, advancing Singapore’s EV ecosystem and Smart Nation vision of connected and sustainable mobility solutions.

Andrew Lim, Managing Director, Government and Large Enterprise, Group Enterprise at Singtel said, “Our collaboration with Hyundai Motor is timely given the Singapore Government’s decision to phase out internal combustion engine vehicles by 2040 and the recent Budget announcement on new policies to encourage more Singaporeans to switch to driving electric vehicles. By pushing the boundaries of what is possible with 5G, IoT and other advanced technologies, we also want to build up Singapore’s smart manufacturing and Industry 4.0 capabilities and strengthen its innovation ecosystem.”

 

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Sustainability A Key Priority For Automotive Sector In 2021 And Beyond

Sustainability A Key Priority For Automotive Sector In 2021 And Beyond

Sustainability will remain a key strategic agenda for automotive companies in 2021 and beyond, with over 75 percent of vehicle manufacturers focused on sustainability in 2020, according to GlobalData. Pirelli & C. SpA, Audi AG and Volkswagen AG were the top companies with mentions of ‘sustainability’ in their filing documents in 2020.

In the automotive sector, Internet of Things (IoT), sustainability and electric vehicles (EVs) continue to be on top of the agendas for automotive companies. Global production of EVs is likely to reach 7.6 million units by 2025, and tightening regulations are likely to force companies to focus on large-scale investments in sustainability and EVs, or face uphill challenges in the future.

“The EV market has the potential to facilitate clear environmental benefits, coupled with steady and sustainable growth. Hence, even contemporary environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) reporting frameworks, such as Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) is also encouraging corporations to report about topics such as Fuel Economy & Use-phase Emissions. Sustainability in general has gained traction in recent times due to regulatory and technical advancements, enhanced social awareness and investor preferences. These have been the major drivers in redirecting the flow of capital from conventional to sustainable automotive businesses,” said Srobon Banerjee, Practice Head, ESG at GlobalData.

“As we emerge from the pandemic, the automotive industry is heading in a greener direction with sustainability as a key driver and theme. Not only are we seeing increasing pressures from the market and regulators tilting the industry rapidly towards electric cars, but manufacturers are seeking to reduce their carbon footprints wherever possible and examining activity all along the value chain,” added David Leggett, Automotive Analyst at GlobalData.

GlobalData’s Job Analytics database also identified rising job postings for electric vehicles. For example, Hyundai has sped up its eco-mobility hiring, while Apple has also stepped up hiring for its future electric car.

Pereira adds: “Another rising trend in the auto sector is the hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV). Mentions of FCEVs and related keywords in all filings rose by around 10 percent in 2020.”

By 2040, GlobalData expects passenger cars to be the most prominent new application of hydrogen.

Pereira concludes: “Initiatives by Ford and Land Rover to go all electric in specific regions in the next few years is commendable. Long-term sustainability strategies are necessary for auto companies to regain trust amid several emission scandals, while also avoiding governance laggards.”

 

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Choose Digital, Choose The Right Drill

Choose Digital, Choose the Right Drill

James Thorpe of Sandvik Coromant explains how, by combining advanced software with the correct machine tools, manufacturers can digitalise profitably, and on their own terms.

The Industry 4.0 & Smart Manufacturing Adoption Report by IoT Analytics suggests that Industry 4.0 technology uptake is still low among manufacturers. Given that the advantages of Industry 4.0 are now so well-understood, why aren’t more manufacturers digitalising their processes? 

One perception is that applying Industry 4.0 to existing production setups is expensive when, actually, it doesn’t have to be. Another reason for the slow uptake is that manufacturers see no reason to upgrade their existing tooling set-up and processes. If it isn’t broke, why change it? Manufacturers in this category may be unsure how Industry 4.0 fits into their established way of doing things. 

The truth is, automated Industry 4.0 technologies can greatly benefit manufacturers’ bottom lines. For instance, Sandvik Coromant has found that a 20 percent increase in machine utilisation can provide a 10 percent higher gross profit margin and automated systems can massively increase machine uptime. 

Automated equipment can also support the growing trend for machining with limited, or no, human supervision — particularly amid the pandemic. As stated in a recent Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC) report, COVID-19: What It Means for Industrial Manufacturers, “For companies vulnerable to a viral outbreak within their ranks, this would be a critical time to explore a proactive deployment of automation technologies.” 

Today’s Industry 4.0 technologies, including sensors and machine learning can also be beneficial in minimising the number of production stops. Again, increasing profit. This includes stops needed to replace worn tooling, like drills. 

Previously, operators had to rely on manual monitoring to detect wear in machine tools. PwC’s report points towards the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) as an alternative. An example of this is Sandvik Coromant’s latest CoroPlus Machining Insights platform, an expansion of the company’s CoroPlus suite of connectivity software.

Using Machining Insights, CNC machines can connect through Ethernet and transmit information at higher volume than they can currently. This includes manufacturing data to improve workshop efficiency and overall equipment effectiveness (OEE). And this isn’t limited to new machinery.

Most machines are connectible to the network, and there are adapters for older machines to make them compatible. In other words, Industry 4.0 can be integrated easily, even with legacy hardware.

Predictable Wear

Machining Insights is designed to give manufacturers greater visibility of machining processes and provide information to identify and eliminate downtime and inefficiency. This includes during periods of largely or fully-automated processes. 

Let’s face it, one of the biggest threats to production is unpredictable tool life. For a tool to properly support automated production, limiting continuous, controllable wear and eliminating discontinuous, uncontrollable wear are the keys to success. 

Sandvik Coromant’s specialists had this in mind when developing the CoroDrill 860 with enhanced -GM geometry, a new design solid carbide drill that’s optimised for a wide range of materials and applications, across all industry sectors. 

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Whether Simple Or Complex: Motor Control Systems For Manufacturing Automation

Whether Simple or Complex: Motor Control Systems for Manufacturing Automation

New motor control systems from igus ensure a speedy start-up of linear and rotational systems.

Setting up control systems to drive axes is usually time-consuming and can require software programming knowledge. To help manufacturers address this issue, igus has developed two new cost-effective and easy-to-operate control systems so that users—from all areas of industry—can quickly start up their motorised drylin E drive axes. The D3 dryve controls simple linear or rotational axes with DC motors without any software or a PC. For more complex travels such as with multi-axis robots or delta robots, igus offers the D1 dryve, which is a control system for stepper motors, DC motors and EC/BLDC motors. The motor control system can be modified live or simply operated via a web browser.

Industry 4.0, Internet of Things (IoT) and M2M are fields calling for real products and solutions that promote factory digitalisation and automation. With its low-cost automation range, igus offers myriad solutions for a variety of applications. In its drylin product range, igus has been offering lubrication-free linear axes with matching stepper and DC motors for several years. From low-cost solutions, for very simple movements, to rails made of stainless steel, igus offers a large diversity of options to suit any application requirement.

Depending on the process, the customer is supplied with the axis or linear robot that will best meet their requirements. With drylin E, users can deploy the already-configured lubrication-free linear or rotational axes, which are ready-to-install and can be motorised in different installation sizes as a single axis, or a linear robot structure in the case of format and height adjustment systems or pick-and-place applications. For easy control and operation of the axes, igus’ D3 dryve offers a motor control system for simple movement and the D1 dryve a motor control system for more complex tasks. This allows a variety of tasks to be automated without the need for advanced programming.

D3 dryve: Quickly Set, Directly Automated

The D3 control system was developed to perform simple tasks quickly and cost-effectively. The control system is designed for all standard DC motors.

“When developing the D3 dryve, we mainly focused on enabling a simple, user-friendly start-up for anyone,” explains Rene Erdmann, Head of Business Unit drylin E Drive Technology.

No licences or software are needed for installation of the control system as all functions have been integrated into the device directly. Simply connect the control system to a 24V power supply and set the operating mode, end-position switch-off, and the motor current by means of DiP switches. The speed can be adjusted with an integrated rotary controller. Current-limiting is done by means of a screwdriver with another controller. Once made, the settings are permanently stored. 

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ZEISS Partners Microsoft To Accelerate Cloud Solutions For Efficient Manufacturing

ZEISS Partners Microsoft To Accelerate Cloud Solutions For Efficient Manufacturing

ZEISS Group and Microsoft Corp. has announced a multi-year strategic partnership to accelerate ZEISS’ transformation into a digital services provider that is embracing a cloud-first approach. By standardising its equipment and processes on Microsoft Azure as its preferred cloud platform, ZEISS will be able to provide its customers with enhanced digital experiences, address changing market needs more quickly and increase its productivity.

Leveraging Azure high-performance compute, AI, and IoT services, ZEISS will work with Microsoft to provide original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) with new quality management solutions, enable microchip manufacturers to build more powerful, energy-efficient microchips and deliver new digital healthcare solutions for improved clinical workflows, enhanced treatments, and device maintenance. Furthermore, ZEISS will create a seamless experience for its customers through one digital platform and manage all digital ZEISS products through one cloud-native platform to enhance continuous and agile product development.

Connected quality platform drives industrial efficiency

Initially, ZEISS will enable its solutions in the Industrial Quality & Research segment to be run on a connected quality platform built on Azure, allowing direct integration into the customer’s production process. The platform will help gain business insights and foster collaboration across domains, assets and processes that have traditionally been managed in siloed, proprietary systems.

ZEISS provides metrology and quality assurance solutions delivering meaningful information on parts dimensions, component behavior and defect detection. Real-time and large-scale analysis of data that is collected at all stages of the manufacturing process is key to efficient and effective quality assurance, tightly integrated with today’s and tomorrow’s IoT-enabled production processes.

Quality is also a key objective of a new ZEISS audit trail solution, initially focused on highly regulated manufacturing industries, such as medical technology which is particularly sensitive to quality assurance. The solution will allow customers to identify root causes and react quickly on quality issues to reduce down-time and keep productivity up. The software will allow customers to track, trace, visualize and analyze process and product data with the help of Azure AI services to identify failure root causes more quickly.

Data-driven healthcare solutions improve patient care

ZEISS Medical Technology provides comprehensive solutions for ophthalmic professionals and microsurgeons, consisting of devices, implants, consumables and services. Through the partnership, ZEISS will connect its medical technology to Microsoft’s cloud and leverage Azure AI and IoT technologies for new digital services such as improved clinical workflows, enhanced treatments, and device maintenance in a secure environment that enables compliance with regulatory requirements in the health industry. These solutions will help improve the quality of life of patients and drive progress, efficiency and access to healthcare.

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Digital Transformation In A Time Of Crisis

Digital Transformation in a Time of Crisis

As COVID-19 strikes, all companies in various sectors are facing a huge challenge of sustaining their businesses. People are being forced to make hard decision on whether to close their doors or digitally innovate even further. Article by Makino.

COVID-19 has paved the way for digital transformation as businesses shift operations to cope with office closures, restricted movement and supply interruption.

Digital transformation has always made sense but adoption has been slowed as people deal with some of the overwhelming concepts around Industry 4.0, the sheer size of the task, and struggle to figure out where the value is coming from and where they can find the “digital dividend”. 

Now, the needs are compelling and urgent and those that fail to transform will likely be left behind and risk becoming irrelevant and uncompetitive.

Transformation in Manufacturing Industry

To create an ecosystem that is digitally enabled, one must have the ability to model a disruption in real-time, the agility to respond to that disruption, and the resilience to cope with whatever the world has to throw at it. 

This is demanded not only by the manufacturers, but also by their customers, inventors, creditors, and insurers. As a result, an extensive digitisation of the shop floor, including its integration with all the other systems, is becoming essential rather than nice to have. It provides the necessary first layer of high-quality data, upon which another layer of insight generation, decision support, and control of production processes—all in real time—must be superimposed. Such systems must become an order of magnitude better than what exists today.

Digital Transformation with Makino

Makino has been actively moving towards the trend of digitalisation. Its facility is designed to meet the growing demand for high-quality products and sophisticated precision engineering capabilities by adopting Industry 4.0 and the principles of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

Despite transforming the facility into a Smart Factory, Makino also acts as a partner which helps their customers to drive them and motivates them towards transformation.

Retool Your Business Processes to Compete in the Global Die/Mould Market

Common practice and misconceptions can lead mould, tool and die owners to conclude that automation offers few benefits to their businesses due to the demands for tight tolerances and one-off or small runs of complex 3D shapes. In today’s competitive global marketplace, with pressures to improve quality and pricing without increasing investment in machines or labour, the time is right to consider taking a production approach.

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Frost & Sullivan Reveals 9 Emerging Trends Reshaping Industries Post COVID-19

Frost & Sullivan Reveals 9 Emerging Trends Reshaping Industries Post COVID-19

Frost & Sullivan’s recent analysis, The Reshaping of Industries Caused by COVID-19, encompasses nine key trends that will emerge from industries reshaping as a response to COVID-19. With the pandemic’s negative impact on the global economy, immediate action is critical. Technology leaders must assess the emerging opportunities resulting from COVID-19 and provide technological innovations to build company, society, and consumer resilience.

“From transformative MegaTrends to geopolitical chaos, there are several factors making it increasingly difficult to grow,” said Murali Krishnan, Visionary Innovation Group Senior Industry Analyst at Frost & Sullivan. “In the near term, companies should focus on diversifying supply chains and leveraging new opportunities arising from changing customer demands. In the long term, it is important to internally adapt to new technologies that support workplace and operational continuity to have a smoother transformation during recovery.”

Chaitanya Habib, Visionary Innovation Group Research Analystadded: “The shift in focus on cost optimisation and on avoiding further production losses post-COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of automation and industrial robots across various industries. As a result, the global industrial robotics market is expected to grow from $44.6 billion in 2020 to $73 billion in the next five years, with increasing FDA approval and patent activity.”

The nine key trends across industries that will emerge as a result of COVID-19 are:

  1. Connected Living:The increased adoption of contactless surfaces post-pandemic will power the home automation and security markets. Systems encompassing voice activation technology will become increasingly popular among consumers.
  2. Connected Work: Reformed connected work scenarios will accentuate the need for “cloud everything.” New subscription-based models will witness a growing demand for Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS).
  3. Digital Health: Digital health driven by telemedicine and robotic care will become the new standard of care delivery. Standardisation of service across the care continuum will require more service and technology providers.
  4. Geopolitical Balance: Countries should work together to keep trade flowing and ensure the supply of essential products, sending a signal of confidence to the global economy.
  5. Human Augmentation: The behavioral analytics market is expected to reach $3 billion in revenue in 2030, up from $230 million in 2019. Post-COVID-19, behavioral data will be used to enhance healthcare systems, financial services, and cybersecurity.
  6. Lights-out Operations: Autonomous “lights-out” operations will propel the demand for remote asset management solutions, and service providers will focus on data management strategies and data-driven business models.
  7. Smart Cities: Smart cities will create significant business opportunities with a market value of $2.46 trillion by 2025. Smart cities will prioritise more digitalised services and a strong data analytics infrastructure, leading to increased spending on technology.
  8. Supply Chain Optimisation: The supply chain industry is creating radical innovations with augmented reality, virtual reality, advanced robotics, real-time inventory tracking, and exploring how 3D printing could completely disrupt the supply chain in the next 10 years.
  9. Technology Advancements: Pandemic preparedness will speed up the deployment of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions and accelerate AI innovation. Beyond specific disease management, post-pandemic economies also will rely on AI and machine learning (ML) tools to expedite digital transformation across key business initiatives.

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Continuing The Automation Legacy

Continuing the Automation Legacy

John Young, APAC director EU Automation, discusses the benefits of bringing legacy control systems into the fourth industrial revolution.

The cyclopic is an electric, foldable bike that’s set to be the most compact on the market. The invention takes inspiration from the Penny Farthing. Its handles are fixed upon the larger front wheel, and the back wheel folds inwards so the bike can fit into a portable bag that rolls along. The cyclopic is designed to offer users with a space-saving, lightweight solution to city travel. 

While manufacturers don’t use equipment that has been around as long as the original penny farthing, most facilities do still rely on older equipment in their production lines. As the first generation of factory automation comes to an end, the future of many control systems may seem bleak. In fact, a 2019 survey carried out by Dell Technologies found that 91 per cent of midsize and larger organisations face major hurdles to digital transformation. The notion that these organisations should scrap all their legacy systems in favour of new infrastructure is impractical. Instead, manufacturers should consider how their existing equipment can connect to the Internet of Things (IoT).

Out with the Old?

“The programmable controller’s time was right. It invented itself because there was a need for it, and other people had that same need.” Those are the words of Dick Morley, the father of the programmable logic controller (PLC) as he reflected on his invention, 40 years later. When the PLC was invented in the late 1960s, it was built to give manufacturers better insight into their plant’s processes. This need hasn’t changed very much in subsequent years. Real-time machine control is still a necessity, but the adoption of new technologies means that older PLCs may be lagging behind.

So, are these legacy systems destined for the scrap heap? Not necessarily, they just need to be able to monitor more processes. If we consider the monitoring needs of a variety of industries, it is clear that each one has its own set of requirements. A water utility may be required to monitor the health of its phonelines to make sure they’re working in case of an emergency; while a packaging facility that uses injection moulding may need to retrieve data on the speed of its machines. 

While control systems such as the PLC won’t be made redundant any time soon, their functions and capabilities will need to extend in order to manage these increased data requirements. 

Smarten Up

Manufacturers may need some support to take their control systems into the future. Modern PLCs often come with an Ethernet interface, which older or less expensive systems do not have. Instead, many legacy systems adopt a sometimes-bewildering range of serial communications and proprietary protocols that lack the interoperability most manufacturers require. 

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The Future Of Manufacturing: Impactful Tech On The Horizon

The Future of Manufacturing: Impactful Tech on the Horizon

The future of manufacturing is brimming with opportunity—it is full of new technologies designed to reduce waste and maximise process efficiency and flexibility through software and hardware capabilities. Article by Rahav Madvil, Simulation Product Manager for Siemens Digital Industries Software, and Noam Ribon, Senior Business Consultant at Siemens Digital Industries Software.

Industrial manufacturing as a sector has been an early adopter of robotics and other forms of technological improvements for decades. Robotics have been one of the best options to increase production efficiency for large and often highly repetitive manufacturing processes. But the era of producing large quantities of just a few products with low mix is coming to an end, giving way to increased product personalisation requiring a more flexible production process with less waste than ever before.

Fortunately, the future of manufacturing is brimming with opportunity. It is full of new technologies designed to reduce waste and maximise process efficiency and flexibility through software and hardware capabilities. Almost all of this promise is built upon a foundation of digital transformation – and the digital twin. Everything from raw material tracking to process optimisations to hardware selection stem from insights gained from the digital twin and a closed-loop optimisation of entire facilities.

The most difficult aspect of any change to operation are the inevitable changes to process—they are expensive twice over, because nothing is being produced and resources are still being consumed. An autonomous transport initiative squarely addresses this, relying on a few, key technologies to make it happen.

The Power of Virtual Commissioning

Creating a comprehensive digital twin of your production process can greatly reduce downtime for new machines, new processes and new products.  Let’s say you need to install a new CNC station. What if the processes for this new machine could be validated before it ever arrived on the production floor by using the digital twin of the production line? Less time could be spent integrating the new component into the overall production lines through line integration as a part of virtual commissioning.  Available today, virtual commissioning is the critical underpinning to an efficient production environment enabling a closed-loop iterative optimisation of the entire facility.

Virtual commissioning is vital, not only for testing software controls, but for adding insight to the efficiency of the controls strategy. It is also essential for embarking on the advanced robotics journey, laying the groundwork for implementing greater process automation and flexibility needed to efficiently implement tomorrow’s manufacturing technologies today.

Simulate Everything Upfront

One of the best options to minimise risk when updating an existing process or making a new one is to simulate the new operations. It nearly eliminates upfront investment in machinery before knowing whether the new process will operate as expected on the shop floor. For new digitalisation efforts, this is where a digital twin should be established for the process. Without a comprehensive study of the actions within a plant new equipment could be under-utilised leading to lost investment.

Just as important is the implementation of IoT devices, that serve to close the loop between the digital twin and the physical processes once the new processes have been initiated. Although these devices are often embedded in new production equipment, but it is important to consider how to best maximise the voluminous data they generate to gain crucial insight into the production process.

Next Generation Programming

Another route to maximising production time even when supporting a high product mix is to expedite the reprogramming of the robotics in use on the factory floor. Without integrated robotic control, updating a robotic arm for a new task can be incredibly time-consuming. It needs to be taken offline, reprogrammed, validated and restarted, for each robot that will handle the new processes.

In a partnership between AtriMinds and B/S/H/, Siemens Digital Industries Software helped bring flexibility to robotic arms by enabling automation for flexible products.

Siemens Digital Industries Software bring flexibility to robotic arms by enabling automation for flexible products.

All that changes by integrating the programmable logic controllers for these robots into the comprehensive digital twin. Much of this process can be streamlined. Does a bolt spacing on a phone need to be shifted slightly to accommodate the latest 5G wireless antenna? If the entire fleet of robots working on that production line could understand the change, that would save many hours across multiple engineering and production teams. Engineers simply need to let the robots know of the change and any differences in manufacturing tolerances can be accounted for with closed loop sensing through visual or force feedback. With force feedback within the robotic arm, any force exerted over a defined threshold can initiate a pause to the robotic arm’s actions and readjust positioning to address the perceived problem.  Instead of shutting them down for reprogramming, all the robots working on the project can adjust independently to subtle changes.

Although this might sound like some futuristic scenario, task-based programming has already been tested in the real world. In a partnership between AtriMinds and B/S/H/, Siemens Digital Industries Software helped bring flexibility to robotic arms by enabling automation for flexible products. Previously, one of the largest hurdles to automating assembly was how to work with flexible components. Traditional robotics rigidly follow predefined movements, so if something were to inadvertently shift, the whole assembly could be destroyed. But by implementing force sensing on the robotic arms, there is an almost intuitive understanding of the parts and how the robot is interacting with the workpiece at its station. If a hole is slightly out of place on a panel, the input from force sensors can help the robot redirect its movement and thread a screw through without complex, preprogrammed instructions for misalignment scenarios.

Optimising Production with Autonomous Robotics

Simulation, virtual commissioning and advanced robotics programming lay the foundation for a fully flexible production floor, but automated guided vehicles (AGVs) and autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) weave it all together and bring it to life. Historically, conveyor belts acted as the material flow paths on a shop floor. They efficiently move product from point A to point B but require semi-static positioning. Even mobile conveyor systems, common in logistics work, take time to move and to ensure a safe path for product.

Heatmap from simulating AGV and AMR activity on a manufacturing floor.

In contrast, AGVs and AMRs can change their path during transit. This saves time that would have been spent readjusting existing features, this is critical for a flexible production environment. Imagine a production floor, making two distinct version of a product. For version one, the bolts need to be added before the secondary assembly is added, while in version two bolts cannot be added until after the sub-assembly has been mounted. In a static conveyor facility, this could be completed given enough conveyor length and a sorting mechanism. Beyond a couple variations to the production sequence the factory would fill up with conveyor loops that only transport a few products at a time, defeating one of the  main goals of the technology But with a fleet of AGVs or AMRs moving materials and work pieces throughout the facility, products can be rerouted and the sequence reordered to another machine. Or, in the case of highly customised consumer products, components could be routed to the best machine for the task. It can account for how much time is required to switch over to the new process, how many units can it produce compared to other machines, and even the impact of a re-route on other processes on the shop floor.

Reaping the Benefits of Tomorrow’s Robotics Today

Achieving all this requires a highly integrated production process. To guarantee a product is still made correctly during an automated process change, it needs to be simulated beforehand using a digital twin. To certify the product can be made in the new location, the production machine needs to be validated for the task using virtual commissioning. And to ensure the slightly different parts don’t produce errors in the process, the machines themselves need to be flexible to adapt to in real time to changing conditions with AGVs and AMRs.

Properly managing all these variables can have an incredibly positive effect on process performance, in fact it can produce up to a 40 percent improvement in labour productivity, according to a 2020 McKinsey study. Understanding the shop floor is an invaluable proposition and will continue to net savings and improvements through the life of the facility, even making it last longer by reducing maintenance overhead and costs with the improved condition monitoring of extensive IoT and the comprehensive digital twin.

Learn more of how Tecnomatix brings the tools of tomorrow’s factories to the factories of today with Siemens’ Xcelerator portfolio with free trials for the Process Simulate and Plant Simulate tools.

 

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ITAP 2020: Forging Ahead With Industry 4.0 In The New Normal

ITAP 2020: Forging Ahead With Industry 4.0 In The New Normal

Helping manufacturers build a position of strength to operate in a COVID-safe world remains mission critical for this year’s Industrial Transformation ASIA-PACIFIC – A HANNOVER MESSE EVENT (ITAP) from 20 to 22 October.

The event, in its 3rd edition, comes at a time when business transformation is pivotal to survival, scalability and sustainability. The COVID-19 situation has brought tremendous disruption to all industries and economies, forcing manufacturers and businesses to rethink their business strategies, relook business operations, recalibrate their resources and reskill their workforce. There has never been a more urgent need for a deeper understanding and adoption of Industry 4.0 (I4.0) solutions to emerge stronger in a post COVID-19 world.

Going digital-first for expanded outreach and growth opportunities

Amidst global travel and border restrictions, ITAP 2020 is poised to stage a first hybrid edition yet as it goes virtual with a custom-built interactive platform and physical bolt-on activities to optimise engagement and knowledge transfer opportunities beyond physical event barriers of time, language and geography. With ‘Forging Ahead with Industry 4.0 In the New Normal’ as the driving theme, ITAP 2020 devises innovative ways in the virtual space for stakeholders to continue to explore I4.0 solutions to aid and complement business operations.

“Business survivability and transformation are the two biggest challenges our customers in the manufacturing industry are now facing. More than just about increasing productivity, it is about finding new opportunities to urgently accelerate and support their agility and responsiveness,” said Mr Aloysius Arlando, CEO SingEx Holdings Pte Ltd, who co-organises ITAP. “In these trying times, establishing a hybrid platform will allow the community to easily collaborate on feasible solutions, optimise engagement and knowledge transfer, and find new growth opportunities.”

Heeding the call for bite-sized learning

This will not be the ITAP community’s first experience with virtual engagement sessions this year. Since May, SingEx Exhibitions has held regular virtual sessions under the ITAP Connect series, comprising interactive web engagement sessions to enable the community to continue interacting despite not being able to meet in person, as well as share case studies and learnings across borders with solution providers, domain experts and one another.

The sessions will also continue in the lead up to the main engagement from 20 to 22 October, when all learning and networking engagements will then be hosted on a dedicated virtual interactive platform. Registered participants will gain access to round-the-clock content on this platform with personalised recommendations of solutions and products, targeted networking and lead generation opportunities. The platform will also provide companies with a one-stop portal to showcase their solutions and conduct demonstrations for their products and services fashioned in the spirit of ITAP’s signature Learning Journey Approach and thematic zones – Gateway to I4.0, Robotics Experimental Experience Zone, the Collaboration Lab, as well as the Digital Sandbox. These will be complemented by physical bolt-on activities at specific locations with safety measures put in place to provide first-hand access to latest innovations, as well as maximize showcasing and networking opportunities for industry stakeholders in Singapore.

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