We have to be honest: the month of May passed by in a flash. With the annual SAP SAPPHIRE NOW conference happening in Orlando, Florida in a week, we’ve been too preoccupied preparing for our different sessions: from our customers, Netafim and Mindray, talking about digitalized sales and business innovation, to our CEO, who will be discussing our own solutions offered on the SAP App Center during the partner summit.
However, this doesn’t mean that May didn’t provide us with examples of stellar Industry 4.0 news; just look at the four pieces of news below!
Conair Bites The Bullet With ‘Uptime Guaranteed’
Would you be willing to promise a guaranteed performance and uptime for your equipment? With Industry 4.0 forming the backbone of their new initiative, American Corporation Conair is. “Uptime Guaranteed” will use data for its performance guarantee, with the aim to accurately forecast uptime percentages, with a commitment to fixing their equipment to hit that percentage.
All this rests on their previous investments in Industry 4.0, and they don’t intend to reduce that. Instead, Conair’s new cloud-based system called Conair SmartServices uses modules to capture data “generated by controls on virtually all Conair equipment and many auxiliaries sold by other companies”, as per Plastics Technology. That data can then be transmitted, analysed, and then accessed through a web-based platform by processors, who can sort and organise the data based on their needs.
Euromap Sets A Standard For Industry 4.0
All manufacturers understand the problems you can face when it comes to integrating different systems and processes. The European machinery association Euromap has created a first step to solving this issue: a common digital standard, called Euromap 77, for injection molding machines, with other standards in the making.
As per Plastics News, this standard is “based on what's called OPC Unified Architecture, which is an interoperability standard used in the field of industrial automation by several industries”. Machines from different manufacturers can be connected in one secure network to monitor and transfer data, creating the interface for other Industry 4.0 products to run on.
Start-Ups Find A 3D Printer To Depend On
High-volume manufacturing and 3D printing aren’t usually options for ecommerce start-up companies, who can’t afford expensive production runs and inventory space. Voodoo Manufacturing, a 3D printing company in New York, is trying to tackle this problem through their “full-stack” manufacturing service called Fulfilled by Voodoo (FBV).
“The solution lets Voodoo's customers upload a design file to its website and leave the manufacturing, assembly, packaging and shipping of products to Voodoo”, as per Forbes. In this way, endless customisation options are available to the companies, who can order exactly the amount they need, only when they need it. This frees start-ups from having to consider minimum orders and other manufacturing forecasting when designing products, and allows them to focus on creating the best product for the consumers.
US Air Force Uses Additive Manufacturing To Replace Old Parts
Speaking of 3D printing, the US Air Force is also investing in additive manufacturing, but to answer another need: maintenance. As per The Manufacturer, “Through this project, the US Air Force will explore how 3D Systems’ Figure 4 Production system can be used to reproduce aircraft components for decades old planes that may no longer have reliable sources of replacement parts.” Using Digital Light Processing (DLP) technology which has a fast light-based UV curing process, low criticality components that were out-of-production will be created.
As with Voodoo, the ability for 3D printing to produce specific parts without minimum order quantities was a plus factor. For the US Air Force, though, there was another factor that was crucial: the ability for quick and timely production meant reduced aircraft on ground, increasing turnaround time.
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