Technology is the enabler of industrial advancements!
According to IDC predictions, by the year 2020, 60% of manufacturers will depend on digital platforms which may help them increase their overall bottom-line by 30%.
Doesn’t it sound amazing?
Gone are those days when manufacturing was labor-intensive. Over the past few years, the definition of manufacturing has changed immeasurably. Now it is all about a sophisticated, intelligent set of IT-based processes and tools which encourage smart manufacturing and a cognitive environment.
Klaus Schwab, a German engineer and economist, has explicitly articulated in his book (The Fourth Industrial Revolution) that we have entered the era of the fourth industrial revolution. The first industrial revolution happened in the late 1700s when factories were given the utmost importance. The second was in the 20th century – automobiles. And then the 3rd industrial revolution – computers.
With each industrial revolution, products were manufactured faster, more precisely and consistently. Industry 4.0 fosters the smart factory, encouraged technologies such as the Internet of Things, Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and more.
This is a smart world and every manufacturer supports the fact that quality of product defines the success of the business for customers (as per a recent IQMS survey). Accurate, well-informed and real-time collaboration with employees 24/7 will drive the most efficient path to growth and productivity.
In the current scenario, IoT enabled cyber-physical systems communicate with each other in real-time across the organization. Big Data analytics, robotics etc. also ensure higher level of accuracy in supply chain and minimize order delays.
Industry 4.0 is the scenario of today’s industrial world. Here are a few aspects that make this a ‘game changer’ –
- Transparency of information – A virtual copy of physical files or data is saved online so as to smooth the workflow
- Interoperability – Machines and sensors are maintained to make collaboration easy for staff members
- Decentralized and well-informed decision making – Helps decision makers evaluate tasks and operations efficiently, without wasting time and money
- Technical assistance to users – Eliminates human efforts by offering high-end physical tools to departments
Now, talking about the emerging trends in advanced manufacturing – here are some of the emerging trends that will nurture industry 4.0 and change the way businesses work.
- Advanced robots
Robots are changing the definition of the manufacturing process. The robot is a computer programmable machine which is designed to accomplish a series of complex tasks automatically. Guided by the external controlling device or a device within, a robot can assemble, dispense, handle processing and welding, inspect equipment and carry out difficult tasks easily.
Robots such as Sophia, Atlas, Asimo by Honda, iCub, PETMAN and Nao are names of a few intelligent robots which are on the forefront of this robotics revolution. These robots can perform activities, recognize postures, environment and walk on rough terrains without breaking a sweat. A set of sensors, dexterous hands, and ultimate manoeuvrability makes them impressive humanoid robots.
- Additive manufacturing
Commonly known as 3D printing, additive manufacturing is the process of creating physical three-dimensional objects directly from the computer’s digital design. Here, three-dimensional objects are synthesized using layering of these materials – ceramics, composites, metal powder, glass and even edibles such as chocolate.
Isn’t it interesting? Simply stated, additive manufacturing involves the creation of complex products by a layering of materials. Components which are exposed to high pressures can be produced with this manufacturing process, using cobalt-chromium powder. Industries such as aerospace, medical, automotive, energy and consumer products industries are highly leveraging additive manufacturing technology so that they can work with utmost precision in order to beat the competition.
- Augmented Reality
The word augmented means enhanced. Augmented reality is an enhanced reality where graphics, sound, touch feedback, and actions are added to the natural environment with the help of superimposed computer-generated images. This changes the way we look at the world and creates enhanced user experiences.
Augmented Reality offers an immersive, step by step instruction guide for technicians who work on the shop floor. Your staff members can see a visualization of internal components of machines. This will enhance the learning experience, save time and cost by reducing unneeded resources.
AR applications help you optimize the production process through the early fusion of real and virtual reality. It encourages accuracy and evaluation of virtual plans in a real environment.
Simulation is known to be the second largest innovation and management science used by manufacturing managers. Simply put, it is a careful use of software to make computer models of manufacturing units. This helps to evaluate the manufactured systems and obtain vital information.
Here are a few benefits of simulation in manufacturing – calculation of optimal resources required, time spent in the system by parts, time spent during transportation, percent utilization of machines and workers, it supports just-in-time manufacturing. These are just a few of many advantages of simulation which helps manufacturers grow and evolve.
- Cloud- cybersecurity
With better data collection techniques and cloud-enabled digital tools, manufacturers can view real-time social and analytics data 24/7.
94% of businesses claimed that they saw an improvement in data security after migrating to the cloud. 91% of them conveyed that the cloud makes it easier to meet business compliance requirements.
Cloud technology has completely changed the definition of remote working. It allows employees to collaborate, communicate, brainstorm and make wise decisions from anywhere in the world.
Talking about cybersecurity, it protects the internet-connected systems (software, hardware, data) from malicious cyber-attacks like Ransomware. It eliminates unrequired data access so that only the concerned people can view, edit and manage the data.
SAP is a pioneer of innovation. With vision and insights, SAP has created the most amazing cloud services that can help your organization flourish like never before. Some of these cloud and web services include object detection: validating photos on health insurance cards, image feature extraction: identify similarities, and more.
- Big data and analytics
Data volume doubles every two years. Presently, companies like IBM and SAP have created cutting-edge analytics tools which include a huge array of analytics capabilities such as data discovery and visualization, business intelligence, planning, and predictive analytics.
With the growing volume of data every day, it is crucial for manufacturers to have fast and actionable insights and a multi-cloud environment to address every challenge head-on.
Let’s see how big data as a technology helps modern manufacturers –
- It gives the ability to track the exact location of products
- Allows you to predict and forecast customer demand
- Enables tracking of machines and resources to improve efficiency
- Monitors daily production capabilities
As manufacturing processes are evolving at a rapid pace, it has become crucial for businesses to leverage such innovations to get timely insights into business needs. It lets you manage and analyze your large volume of data in a hassle-free manner while automating tasks. This saves time, secures data and improves product quality.
Technologies and trends like blockchain, simulation, agile manufacturing, cloud, AR, robotics etc. are uncovering new growth opportunities for global businesses. To know more, please visit http://optiproerp.com/in.
OptiProERP is a suite of business management software that includes production management, CRM, Quality Control, Supply Chain Management, and other modules. It’s a manufacturing ERP solution designed for continuous success for your business.