SAP launches new cloud-based manufacturing solution

sap manufacturing execution

Software giant SAP has launched its new Manufacturing Execution application on its Hana Enterprise Cloud, which the company says is a “fully scalable and secure private cloud service”.

SAP says the new software helps manufacturers “embrace Industry 4.0 automation” and process high volumes of data from sensors and devices from the Internet of Things in a real-time cloud delivery environment that can simplify implementation and improve time to value at lower cost.

SAP Manufacturing Execution in the cloud helps manufacturers connect, monitor and tightly control operations, says the company, adding that it facilitates Industry 4.0 strategies by “integrating with business and manufacturing processes to enable efficient, high-quality production on the shop floor”.  Continue reading SAP launches new cloud-based manufacturing solution

IoT Tech Expo Global 2017 lines up keynote speakers

iot tech expo global 2017

The IoT Tech Expo Global conference has announced keynote speakers for the upcoming global event in London 2017. 

Taking place on January 23-24th at the Olympia venue, the event will feature keynote speakers from the likes of Shell, Rolls-Royce, SSE, Maersk, Thyssenkrupp, Sky, Nest, Ford, Heathrow Airport and more.

The two-day event will cover a range of industries from manufacturing to healthcare, transportation to government, logistics to retail, with a total of 7 conference tracks covering the entire Internet of Things ecosystem.  Continue reading IoT Tech Expo Global 2017 lines up keynote speakers

Opinion: Industry 4.0 is transforming manufacturing – but the cyber threats are increasing

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By Mirko Brandner, technical manager, Arxan Technologies 

If you attended this years’ Hannover Messe, the leading international trade fair for industrial technology, you will have seen fully developed “Industry 4.0” techniques on demonstration. Coined at the Hannover Messe five years ago, Industry 4.0 represents the fourth industrial revelation, driven by data and automation.

This futuristic idea has now become a reality and these new techniques are leading the way to a fully digitised, intelligent manufacturing plant. Mobile ultrasound measuring devices for foresighted machine maintenance, smart liquid analysis, driverless forklifts and even collaborating robots – these were just a few of the new systems and equipment on show.

To remain competitive, companies need to embrace digitisation. The fusion of IT and automated engineering has resulted in intelligent collaboration of all components involved in the production process, this promises an increase in efficiency, flexible resource management and the individualisation of mass production.  Continue reading Opinion: Industry 4.0 is transforming manufacturing – but the cyber threats are increasing

Connected devices, industrial control systems expose manufacturers to cyber threats, say Deloitte and Mapi

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Intellectual property theft tops manufacturers’ concerns, says new report, which identifies measures to control cyber risks associated with advanced manufacturing

Nearly half of surveyed manufacturing executives lack confidence their assets are protected from external threats, according to a new study from Deloitte and the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (Mapi) on Cyber risk in advanced manufacturing

Study results indicate nearly 40 percent of surveyed manufacturing companies were affected by cyber incidents in the past 12 months, and 38 percent of those impacted indicated cyber breaches resulted in damages in excess of $1 million.

Trina Huelsman, vice chairman, Deloitte & Touche and US industrial products and services leader, says: “Manufacturers are innovating at an unprecedented rate, integrating cutting-edge technologies in products, automating the shop floor, connecting supply chains, and increasingly investing in valuable intellectual property.  Continue reading Connected devices, industrial control systems expose manufacturers to cyber threats, say Deloitte and Mapi

Connected world: The death of proprietary networks

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Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of EU Automation, takes a look at one of the casualties of fluid communication in the factory – that is, the death of proprietary networks and communication protocols in favour of the uninhibited free flow of data 

Like it or not, we live in modern world of fluidity and interconnectedness in which the once ordinary now transcends all previous boundaries.

Take the humble kettle for instance. It’s a sign of the times that you can now purchase a kettle you can control from your phone via the internet. It will even send you notifications when it needs filling or if it’s at optimum temperature. Because it was hard to tell before.

Joking aside, one place where interconnectivity really is making a difference is on the factory floor.  Continue reading Connected world: The death of proprietary networks

ABB and Microsoft partner to offer industrial cloud solution

abb microsoft
ABB and Microsoft have formed a strategic partnership to help industrial customers create new value with digital solutions.

The companies say the new ABB Ability service will “enable customers to benefit from the unique combination of Microsoft’s intelligent cloud and ABB’s deep domain knowledge and extensive portfolio of industrial solutions”.

The two partners say they are “committed to empowering digital transformation” in customer segments such as robotics, marine and ports, electric vehicles and renewable energy.  Continue reading ABB and Microsoft partner to offer industrial cloud solution

Manufacturing: A different type of industrial cloud

Not so long ago, computers were almost always in a business location – an accountant’s office, or something like that. But gradually, partly thanks to Apple iMac, the machines started making their way into homes in large numbers. 

But there are still categories of computers which don’t really belong in the home, or at least weren’t designed for domestic bliss. If you can comfortably fit a supercomputer or a mainframe into your house, that’s probably enough domestic bliss for you anyway.

For most of us, desktop computers – or increasingly laptop computers – are just about all the space we can share, and the largest manufacturers of such poor-man’s systems were recently listed by Gartner.

Worldwide computer shipments in second quarter of 2016

  1. Lenovo – 13.2 million units
  2. HP – 12.3 million units
  3. Dell – 10 million units
  4. Asus – 4.7 million units
  5. Apple – 4.6 million units
  6. Acer – 4.4 million units
  7. Others – 15.4 million units


Source: Gartner

Continue reading Manufacturing: A different type of industrial cloud

What the auto industry can learn from payments sector about cybersecurity

ultimaco information security

By Johannes Lintzen, vice president of sales and business development at Utimaco

Most big automotive brands have been around since the time “before connected cars”. Since automobiles are typically built incrementally through a complex supply chain, combining existing and new technologies developing at different speeds, it is difficult to ensure that a vehicle is entirely connected.

This includes being accessible for over the air software updates as well and being protected against security breaches, while protecting a driver’s privacy – all at the same time.

With the increase in connected cars on the roads, and an industry disruptor in the name of Tesla, many in the automotive industry are looking for ways to secure their products. There are some key similarities between the auto industry’s current situation, and what payment companies had to consider with the advent and wider adoption of payment cards. Continue reading What the auto industry can learn from payments sector about cybersecurity

Energy and the IoT: Future-proofing Britain’s energy infrastructure

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Martyn Williams, managing director of industrial automation software expert Copa-Data UK, discusses the role the Internet of Things plays in the energy sector 

Few companies can afford to have their operations halted by unexpected downtime, but for the energy grid potential power failures could plunge parts of, or entire, countries into darkness.

The cost of ensuring that Britain can switch its lights back on, following a failure, has grown by £12 million in the past year alone.

Naturally, developed economies are not at high risk of power blackouts, apart from in the most extreme of circumstances. Continue reading Energy and the IoT: Future-proofing Britain’s energy infrastructure

The internet of zombies: How to prepare industry for the outbreak

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Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of obsolete components supplier, EU Automation, discusses the internet of zombies and advises on how companies can prepare for the outbreak

Since Dawn of the Dead was first released in 1978, the possibility of a viral outbreak that will turn us all into night crawling, flesh-eating zombies has become a worry for many and a very prolific Hollywood theme.

While it’s unlikely this will ever happen, industry has recently started facing an epidemic across IT systems that companies should be aware of. The internet of zombies won’t result in the end of civilisation, but it does put your company’s confidential information at risk.

The term internet of zombies, was coined by cyber security solutions provider, Radware in its Global Application and Network Security Report 2015-16. The concept refers to the rise of an advanced type of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, named Advanced Persistent Denial of Service (APDoS). This type of attack uses short bursts of high volume attacks in random intervals, spanning a time frame of several weeks.  Continue reading The internet of zombies: How to prepare industry for the outbreak

General Electric and Oracle to ‘digitally connect every industrial asset in the world’

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General Electric and Oracle have formed a strategic partnership focused on building what the companies claim will be a “first of its kind platform” for companies to “digitally connect every industrial asset in the world”. 

Through this collaboration, GE Digital and Oracle will develop and integrate complementary solutions across their product portfolios.  Continue reading General Electric and Oracle to ‘digitally connect every industrial asset in the world’

Siemens technology boss says digitization ‘one of the biggest growth drivers’

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Professor Siegfried Russwurm, chief technology officer at Siemens, says digital transformation is opening up great opportunities

The world has never been as networked as it is now. Whether in gas turbines, trains, manufacturing facilities or medical imaging technologies, our reality is taking on a digital dimension.

Digital change is sounding the bell for a paradigm change – in business as well as private life. As one of the world’s leading companies in digitalization, Siemens is playing an active part in this development. We’ve set a clear focus and identified digitalization as one of the biggest growth drivers to carry us into a successful future.

Even today, Siemens’ worldwide workforce includes about 17,500 software engineers, who contribute a wide range of industry-specific IT and software solutions to their work in electrification, automation and urban infrastructures. Continue reading Siemens technology boss says digitization ‘one of the biggest growth drivers’

ICINCO conference to showcase global expertise in data science

The 13th International Conference on Informatics in Control, Automation and Robotics – ICINCO 2016 

The Thirteenth International Conference on Informatics in Control, Automation and Robotics (ICINCO), will take place from 29 to 31 of July 2016 in Lisbon, Portugal.

Organized by the Institute for Systems and Technologies of Information, Control and Communication (INSTICC), the purpose of the conference is to bring together researchers, engineers and practitioners interested in the application of informatics to control, automation and robotics.  Continue reading ICINCO conference to showcase global expertise in data science

The potential of predictive analytics for machine builders

Martyn Williams, managing director of Copa-Data UK
Martyn Williams, managing director of Copa-Data UK

Martyn Williams, managing director of industrial automation software expert Copa-Data UK, discusses how machine builders can use predictive analytics to minimise the maintenance and downtime costs of their products

The cost of production downtime varies significantly from one industry sector to another, but without a doubt, when it occurs, downtime is a troublesome and expensive inconvenience for all manufacturers.

More often than not, halts in production could be avoided, so imagine just how much manufacturers could save if machine data was available to anticipate breakdowns.

The good news for industry is that the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) is allowing machine builders to design and manufacture intelligent machines with predictive analytics capabilities. Continue reading The potential of predictive analytics for machine builders

Robotics and IoT are a ‘fundamental threat’ to insurance companies, says Capgemini

veniam, v2x, v2v, yamaha
Veniam already has customers for its autonomous vehicle networking technology, which utilises Internet of Things

Technology consultancy firm Capgemini claims the insurance industry is facing a “fundamental threat” in the form of the combined forces unleashed by robotics and the internet of things (IoT). 

In a recent study – World Insurance Report 2016 – into the growing trend of using robotic process automation for office administration procedures, as well as such things as cars equipped with telemetry devices which record every driving action, Capgemini found that expectations are changing within customers it calls “Gen Y” – those aged between 15 and 34. One example of a new company which has combined IoT and telemetry in vehicles is Veniam.

John Mullen, corporate vice president and global insurance leader for Capgemini, says: “By not providing adequate engagement for digitally-advanced customers, carriers [companies] run the risk of pushing them toward a growing population of market entrants and non-traditional technology-driven competitors.

“Gen Y is clearly indicating that they do business differently and those insurers who respond to them on their terms will have a clear competitive advantage.”  Continue reading Robotics and IoT are a ‘fundamental threat’ to insurance companies, says Capgemini