Software platforms for Industry 4.0
Enter the world of Industry 4.0 to understand the essence of the Smart Factory and the benefits of the fourth industrial revolution.
What is Industry 4.0?
Industry 4.0 is a term introduced by the German government in 2011 to identify an industrial strategy that determines the creation of the so-called Smart Factory, thanks to the development of the industries digitalization, especially manufacturing. This change has become necessary and crucial thanks to the latest technological innovations such as cyberfisical systems, wireless communication, the Internet of Things (IoT or IIoT), 3D printing, cloud computing and robotics.
In this context, the proposed software solutions, starting with the Manufacturing Execution System (MES), represent an indispensable step towards digitizing each company. MES is a computerized data collection system for managing and controlling a company's production function. Management concerns execution of orders, valuations of advances, work status, and inventory control in order to obtain data needed for production. The main feature of a MES is the ability to synchronize enterprise management and production in order to bridge the gap between planning and controlling, by optimizing the use of production resources.
Through this tool, it is possible to react immediately to any production overheads, but also to know the progress of orders in real time, machine status, material placement and factory performance.
"Today, to increase the company competitiveness is essential to become protagonists of Industry 4.0"
What are the benefits for companies?
More speed, in particular a reduction of time between the prototyping and the realization phase. Thanks to real-time production monitoring, companies are able to guarantee better quality of their products and to have greater productivity with less waste. The use of digital technologies will have a profound impact following four main guidelines:
- Data usage, computing power and connectivity: which translate into big data, open data, Internet of Things, machine-to-machine and cloud computing for centralizing and storing information
- Analysis: Once you have collected the data, you have to gain value. Machines are able to perfect their yield by "learning" from collected and analyzed data.
- Man-machine interaction: involves the increasingly "touch" interfaces and increased reality
- Switch from digital to "real": includes additive manufacturing, 3D printing, robotics, communications, machine-to-machine interactions and new technologies to store and use energy in a targeted manner, streamlining costs and optimizing performance.
Techsol and Industry 4.0
Techsol works to measure the information and IT status of the company by comparing the verification of operations, organizational processes and IT systems with the client's business context, to define the intervention fields and the most suitable development tools, according to the parameters of Industry 4.0. It is implied that every company must be able to develop a specific project to become a Smart Factory, based on their work environment, goals and potential of the facility. But there are some common steps for all the companies that mainly concern the initial stages:
- automate the production process
- connect machines and plants
- collect, integrate, and transfer information in real time
- provide operators with interconnected devices to manage production activities
Investing in a project 4.0 it means to introduce technological and organizational changes aimed at maintaining a strong position in the market and increasing growth opportunities.
Would you like more information?
Techsol staff is at your disposal for any further information. Do not hesitate to contact us.