• Atul Ojha

Strides In Industry 4.0 & How It Is Helping



In this blog we look at some of the critical components of Industry 4.0 implementation and how it has the potential of changing the entire spectrum of manufacturing organizations.


Industry 4.0 has very far-reaching impact on manufacturing organizations, right from ‘material in’ stage to finished ‘product out’ stage of the entire value chain. Operational efficiency of the entire chain, machine efficiency, energy efficiency, production efficiency, maintenance efficiency, may it be predictive or breakdown maintenance, warehousing efficiency, HSE, health, safety & environment efficiency in the manufacturing framework and the game has just begin!


1. Industrial IoT or IIoT


Industrial IoT is the starting point of Industry 4.0. IoT sensors are connected / installed at key critical points of a manufacturing asset, with computing capabilities some time. This enables the first step of a connected machine, which is now capable of generating manufacturing critical data, useful to create manufacturing intelligence at computing devices. This intelligence will equip you and your team to mange machine health, energy consumption and utilization, preventive maintenance, continuous production and overall manufacturing efficiency.


2. Analytics based on Data


Imagine your shop floor in a forging / foundry unit in Ranjangaon near Pune is generating huge amount of data, yes huge amount of data which may take months and years to process in normal circumstances. Analytics to process big data will give you intelligence, which can be business critical, like ‘the forging press B vibration levels are beyond stipulated limits and machine may break down in about 2 weeks. How priceless is this information for you to undertake preventive maintenance so as to avoid productive time shut down?

And how is this data generated in this use case? A series of IoT sensors installed at critical points enabling a connected machine to collate data at cloud or on-premise data center. Imagine what you can do with this to ensure your assets are in top performing state, your energy consumption is not draining you of your margins, breakdowns are prevented and many more invaluable things you can achieve.


3. Robots in manufacturing


Imagine an automobile plant has an autonomous robot, which is actually is a self-sufficient, intelligent machine that is capable of performing manufacturing tasks, without a human operator, day in day out without needing a break and handling complex repetitive processes with ease and giving you uninterrupted capability of continuous production. Incidentally also tells you the window in which it will need preventive maintenance so as to continue producing.

Also imagine another set of robots are busy going through the warehouse to precisely pick the material required by this machine and take a route with least amount of time and will ensure block free movement.

It will only get better going forward.


4.Digtal Twins in manufacturing


Imagine that you have your entire shop floor in front of you on a screen in a virtual 3D mode where you can have view/monitor, control, manage and correct capability to ensure you have efficient and always running production processes.

Digital Twins or simulations gives you that capability. Using industrial IoT sensors you can create your entire shop floor in the virtual world and manage machine to machine connectivity, learning, health of equipment, energy utilization, preventive maintenance, continuous production using the virtual model, data and intelligence reports, in real time basis, in the virtual mode as you would do in the real mode



5. Cybersecurity


As more organizations are adopting implementation of Industry 4.0, it is imperative to put the cybersecurity strategy in place. Imagine your connected manufacturing facility equipped with industrial IoT devices, analytics, big data collating and processing etc., is all firing full throttle and you have not paid attention to the cybersecurity tech, imagine how big a sitting duck you and your organization can be with the onslaught of hackers or ransomware thugs. This has to go hand in hand to protect your property, intellectual as well as physical, your automated manufacturing processes, your autonomous robots and what not.

In addition to all of this, you have other layers for Industry 4.0, Cloud based manufacturing, horizontal and vertical digital integration in manufacturing, augmented reality, virtual reality, artificial intelligence AI, possibly sometime in a subsequent blog we will look at that.


At Axon Networks we believe we can play a critical role in implementation of Industry 4.0 for your organization, provided you are ready to leverage all of this to your advantage in many more ways than one.


Stay safe & healthy.


Regards,

Atul Ojha

Co-founder

Axon Networks


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