Industry 4.0 is the latest buzzword fascinating the manufacturing sector because it converges the two worlds, which so far have remained aloof from each other – Information technology (IT), operational technology (OT) and digital industry. It connects the supply chain of a manufacturing firm and the ERP systems to the production line, enabling an integrated manufacturing process capable of optimally using the raw materials, human resources, and capital.
Here are a few latest technologies, set to bring the industrial revolution in the coming years.
1) Big Data
Big data analytics is becoming central to the success of the manufacturing sector. The collection and evaluation of data from a bouquet of sources, including customer management systems, production equipment and enterprise management systems are assisting electrical and mechanical engineering companies to take real-time crucial and smarter decisions.
2) Autonomous Robots
With the increasing technological innovations, robots are slowly capturing the interest of the companies. From mitigating errors to providing a safer working environment for the employees, robots offer a bountiful of benefits. Industrial Robots will eventually interact with one another and work in collaboration with humans. They are likely to learn from humans and bring about a seamless working experience.
3) Smart Factory
“More than 76% manufacturers either are working on making their company a smart factory or are working toward formulating the same.”
In the coming years, equipment and machinery are likely to enhance the processes through self-optimization and automation. The benefits of a smart factory are not just limited to the physical production of goods but extend into functions like logistic, supply chain, and new product development.
Interoperability is the capability of a system to transact with the others based on pre-defined protocols. Let us understand this with an example. Your supervisor asks you to pull a critical report from the ERP system. However, the ERP system lacks certain crucial information, which you will have to pull from the LMS and the WMS (results are in excel format). Finally, you need data from a machine to consolidate the final report. However, the machine provides results in a proprietary format, which you need to convert to excel. After spending several hours, your boss is happy with the report. In the long-run, interoperability is essential for transforming data into wisdom. However, with industry 4.0, interoperability will ensure the consolidation from every machine, process, and humans across the entire supply chain, thus reducing the organization silos.