Let’s dispel a myth: “New machine, improvement assured”
It is our Engineer Alessio Rodighiero, Senior Industry 4.0 Engineer, who starts the subject, because it is widely believed that the adoption of a new machine automatically leads to an improvement in efficiency. A brilliant article written in two episodes where Alessio shares the pitfalls and opportunities of interconnecting machines in a real MES project. In the second episode takes the opportunity of giving a timely list of things to know for those who are preparing to purchase a new machine.
The fourth industrial revolution called Industry 4.0 is changing the way of thinking about industrial production. At the dawn, as normal, many aspects were still undefined and unclear. Many things had been theorized but technology had not yet reached the maturity that we find today.
Just think of the large-scale cloud. Today any company has the possibility to use services that exploit complex mathematical models applied to large amounts of data. This was the key to the widespread use of artificial intelligence. For example, neural networks were a concept that existed before Industry 4.0, but implementation was limited in some areas.
Industry 4.0 touches on various areas across the board. Until the advent of this revolution, the specialist and vertical approach was customary.
For example, the manufacturer of the machine, especially automation, on one hand and the suppliers of management or warehouse systems on the other. Both with different goals, languages, tools and methodologies to achieve a goal.
Industry 4.0: an approach that starts from architecture to achieve objectives
The new industrial revolution requires an overall vision that allows the coordination of the various specialists in order to achieve the objectives. An approach that starts from architecture to achieve its objectives. An Industry 4.0 project has a high number of actors consisting of classic roles such as the development of automation systems but there are new figures such as cloud service providers.
An industry 4.0 project is an opportunity to rethink the way the entire industrial production is managed. The goal is always the improvement of production efficiency so first of all we must eliminate the concept of “new machine, guaranteed improvement“.
We dispel a myth “new machine, improvement assured“
Of course they improve the performance of the machine but if this machine is not managed correctly you could come to the conclusion that the old machine did the same things. To increase efficiency you could start from the fact that you have to make sure that the machine is stopped as little as possible. The planned maintenance is added so that the machine is always in an optimal state. Up to this point we enter into a classic approach. So far we have the tools that help to ensure the result. But is it enough?
A very trivial example could be: I buy a machine that produces large volumes of high precision mechanical parts.
I make sure that the machine works as much as possible with an accurate planning and create a monthly plan for the replacement of a part or all the tools.
The situation could arise where one or more tools have been changed even if it was not necessary. In addition to this, normal maintenance involves a downtime and therefore a cost. The question that arises is whether you can improve the maintenance of the machine and this leads to the concept of predictive maintenance. Ordinary controls can be added to an event maintenance.
You can take an extra step. If you put all the information together you can get a digital model of the machine that can be used for production simulations. An advantage is to rebuild the production model by eliminating unexpected and downtime as much as possible.
Others are the scenarios and possibilities made available by this industrial revolution.
This way of thinking should lead the customer to properly assess the efforts required for the interconnection of the machine. This is not just a need for legislation but a real opportunity to improve their production processes.
It is therefore time to enter the heart of the discussion, we continue with the next episode June 25, 2020.
Written by Alessio Rodighiero
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