In this exclusive interview, Mike Rigby, Barclays’ head of manufacturing, talks about how robotics and automation technology can help UK companies compete with the rest of the world – even those in the Far East
It’s a generally accepted notion that when it comes to computer technology, what happens in the US this year is likely to happen in the UK the following year, and then on mainland Europe the year after that. Meaning, Germany is a bit behind the leaders when it comes to IT. That’s the perception some people in the tech industry have anyway.
The wider public’s perception of Germany as a tech leader is predicated on the country’s prowess in engineering, specifically its expertise in auto-making, and, by extension, manufacturing. And crucial to manufacturing is the technology of robotics and automation, which is also an area in which Germans are thought to be strong.
Company to support Open Platform Communications standard across IoT offerings
Microsoft says it is working with the Open Platform Communications Foundation to enable almost any industrial internet of things network through interoperability between the millions of applications and industrial equipment compliant with the OPC Unified Architecture standard.
Microsoft will further enable its IIoT customers to connect a broad range of manufacturing equipment and software that can span decades of investment with extended support of the OPC UA open source software stack.
US President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited the Harting stand at the Hannover Messe, with the Harting family greeting the two heads of state. The US is this year’s partner country of the Hannover Messe.
President Obama was accompanied by a large delegation. Together with Chancellor Merkel, the 44th US president learned about Harting products and solutions, which are accompanying companies around the globe into Industrie 4.0.
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.
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.
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 internet of things is enabling industry to connect individual robotic and automated work cells with other similar cells to create multicellular organisms within what could now be referred to as “smart factories”, particularly as the factory building itself can be connected to those multicellular organisms operating within its walls.
Not only that, those smart factories can themselves be connected to other smart factories within the body of the industrial company’s entire estate, which itself is all wired up to what could be called a central nervous system.
Sawyer robots to demonstrate three different manufacturing tasks on the show floor
Rethink Robotics will showcase its high performance Sawyer robot at Hannover Messe 2016, providing the international audience an opportunity to see how smart, collaborative robots are changing the game in the global manufacturing marketplace.