The great migration: cloud computing for smart manufacturing

smart factory illustration

Martyn Williams, managing director at Copa-Data UK, discusses “unlocking the value of cross-facility data sets” through cloud computing for smart manufacturing

According to an industry survey by IBM, two thirds of mid-sized companies have already implemented – or are currently considering – a cloud based storage model for their organisation.

The analytic advantages of cloud computing in industry are no secret, in fact, 70 per cent of these cloud-using respondents said they were actively pursuing cloud-based analytics to gleam greater insights and efficiency in order to achieve business goals.  Continue reading The great migration: cloud computing for smart manufacturing

UL joins the largest-ever US business delegation to Hannover Messe

UL hannover messe crop

UL, a safety science company, is participating in Hannover Messe 2016 as part of the largest-ever US delegation to the event, the world’s foremost trade convention for industrial and manufacturing technologies, taking place April 25-29, 2016 in Hannover, Germany.

“While UL in Europe has been participating at Hannover Messe for more than 15 years, we are excited to join the US business delegation and are looking forward to welcoming visitors at our two booths this year,” said Gitte Schjotz, UL’s SVP and president for EMEA and Latin America.

“UL empowers the next industrial evolution through safe adoption of industrial automation, energy, digital factories, cybersecurity, industrial supply and technology.”  Continue reading UL joins the largest-ever US business delegation to Hannover Messe

Hannover Messe: Pepperl+Fuchs showcases its thin client for smart industry

pepperl+fuchs thin client at hannover messe
The Pepperl+Fuchs thin client for smart industry

Pepperl+Fuchs is showcasing its new thin client solution at Hannover Messe. 

The company is demonstrating its VisuNet RM GXP with new RM Shell 4.1.VisuNet GXP with RM Shell 4.1. The smart solution for applications will be available to view in Zone 1 and 21.

The goal is to offer users solutions that meet all the challenges of Industry 4.0, says Pepperl+Fuchs.  Continue reading Hannover Messe: Pepperl+Fuchs showcases its thin client for smart industry

Hannover Messe 2016: Global arena for the world of integrated industry

US President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the opening ceremony of Hannover Messe
US President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the opening ceremony of Hannover Messe

The curtains have gone up at Hannover Messe 2016, where leading industrial nations are vying for technological supremacy.

For example, 465 exhibitors from the USA are presenting innovations designed to take manufacturing to new digital heights.

They are sharing the arena with a host of German enterprises intent on making Industrie 4.0 a reality by means of cutting-edge mechanical and electrical engineering solutions.

So who’s going to come out on top? Or will the road ahead instead call for close collaboration?  Continue reading Hannover Messe 2016: Global arena for the world of integrated industry

Kuka robots perform a dance at Hannover Messe opening ceremony

kuka robot dance hannover messe

LBR iiwa lightweight robots did a dance at the Hannover Messe opening ceremony on Sunday 24 April.

In front of almost 3,000 guests including Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President Barack Obama, dancers and Kuka LBR iiw robots turned human-robot-collaboration into a staged performance.

Human-robot collaboration is a central topic for the factory of the future.

The grand opening of Hannover Messe 2016 on Sunday was based entirely on the topic of Integrated Industry – Discover Solutions.

In a spectacularly choreographed performance, seven LBR iiwa robots visually depicted the five flagship themes at Hannover Fair over five acts: Digital Factory, Industrial Supply, Industrial Automation, Research & Technology, Energy.

Continue reading Kuka robots perform a dance at Hannover Messe opening ceremony

Panasonic launches relay for programmable logic controllers in industrial settings

panasonic pa-n relay

Panasonic has launched the PA-N Relay suitable for programmable logic controllers (PLCs) used in industrial equipment. 

Panasonic says the PA-N Relay will help PLC manufacturers to develop products that meet new safety standards, adding that the new relay “will contribute to improved safety and reliability of industrial equipment”.

The PA-N Relay has been developed to comply with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards and is certified to the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) standards for programmable logic controllers used to control production facilities at factories. Continue reading Panasonic launches relay for programmable logic controllers in industrial settings

Fanuc developing industrial internet of everything

Fanuc is developing a machine-to-machine network that will connect just about every piece of equipment in a manufacturing plant. 

The Fanuc Intelligent Edge Link and Drive (Field) system is an industrial internet of things network that will be aimed at automakers.

Fanuc already provides General Motors with a global IIoT platform to manage and maintain the automakers’ robots.  Continue reading Fanuc developing industrial internet of everything

The risks of replacement: outdated perceptions of obsolete technology

industrial machinery

Darren Halford, sales director of industrial automation supplier EU Automation, challenges the outdated perceptions of obsolete technology

We’ve all been there, the vacuum has been rattling for months and you’ve gotten used to the slight aroma of charred carpet after every clean. But a final diminishing groan forces you to admit your trusty vacuum has had its day.

Instead of trying to patch up old Henry, most of us would take his demise as the perfect excuse to splash out on that lightweight, wall mounted, cordless number we have seen on the telly. In industrial environments, dealing with broken equipment is not quite as simple as a trip to the local retail park.  Continue reading The risks of replacement: outdated perceptions of obsolete technology

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

ATS wins $100m automation deal

ATS Automation Tooling Systems building
ATS Automation Tooling Systems building

ATS Automation Tooling Systems has received an enterprise order from a company which it would only describe as “a North American-based customer that is a global leader in its market”.

ATS adds that it has provided core manufacturing solutions to the customer for a number of years.

The “Order Booking” is valued at approximately $100 million and involves delivery and installation of systems at several locations that will enable the customer to roll out a new global product. Continue reading ATS wins $100m automation deal

Siemens provides close-up view of its electronics manufacturing plant, where the lines between human and robot workers are blurred

siemens robotic electronics factory
Picture: At Siemens’ Electronics Manufacturing Plant in Erlangen, Germany, the company has devised new concepts for highly flexible manufacturing systems using lightweight robots and 3D printers.

Simulation, 3D printing, lightweight robots – these are some of the innovative technologies driving the Fourth Industrial Revolution – or Industry 4.0. And they are already a reality at Siemens’ Electronics Manufacturing Plant in Erlangen, Germany. A key reason for the success of this plant is that people and machines work hand in hand.

siemens robotic electronics factory
Employees at Siemens’ Electronics Manufacturing Plant in Erlangen have the freedom to try out innovative ideas and turn them into successful projects.

Schorsch assembles small converters. Hannes does the big ones; he inserts a fan and a heat sink in the housing and fastens them with four screws – several hundred times a day. When Hannes takes a break, Schorsch keeps on working unwaveringly.

When Hannes goes home, Schorsch goes on working. Hannes is a temporary factory worker. Schorsch is a lightweight robot. Continue reading Siemens provides close-up view of its electronics manufacturing plant, where the lines between human and robot workers are blurred