A few weeks ago the World Climate Conference was held to discuss sustainability targets for lower energy consumption and less pollution. Few organisations have embraced the goals but Festo, at its Scharnhausen Technology Plant in Germany, has already shown its support for them in the Industrie 4.0, energy efficient, IoT-enabled factory
Energy efficiency often starts from the ground up in manufacturing environments and, for Festo, a major decision was to develop an energy efficiency module that is a plug-and-work solution for the pneumatic circuit as a whole. The module is able to summarise, evaluate and analyse data by using artificial intelligence (AI). The data collected can therefore be pre-processed inside the unit and/or completely transferred into a cloud. A decentralised automation platform usually collects data from different Festo devices and combines them on a valve terminal with Codesys controller on board.
In the Festo Technology Plant at Scharnhausen, this type of installation has been retrofitted to all older machines since 2015 – and is a must for all new machines. The target was to make them energy transparent and to optimise air and current consumption by dedicated switching-on and off cycles depending on several criteria – thus avoiding that energy peaks are just added without any benefit, or leakage causing high extra cost. Data had been fed via object linking and embedding (OLE) for process control (OPC) unified architecture (UA) into the on-site manufacturing execution (ME) system from SAP by its plant connection module (PCo), and further to the enterprise resource planning (ERP) system with SAP HANA cloud. Now the new solutions allow – in conjunction with other actions taken like solar panels or re-use concepts for heat – saving of up to one-third of energy compared to the old plant. Amortisation is expected to be around two years.
In the latest use cases, the data from such energy efficiency modules is brought via OPC-UA and a Festo CPX-IoT Gateway to cloud or IoT platforms like Siemens MindSphere or Rockwell Factory Talk. Festo also provides its own cloud for deeper analytics of all its pneumatic and electric drive components and mechatronic sub-systems as a long-term target. Data is also fed into SAP HANA, Festo’s on-site option in the Scharnhausen factory.
The required apps are developed by Festo, and in the case of external cloud providers, are then installed in the MindSphere environment (using Siemens MindConnect LIB) or the Rockwell Device Analytics (via Shelby Appliance or Team ONE tools). The app for the Festo energy efficiency module inside these clouds or IoT environments allows easy visualisation, quicker set-up and parametrisation of the product and online visualisation during machine run-time. The data analytics support advanced diagnostic and condition monitoring concepts and could lead into predictive maintenance systems by combining data from different sources inside the cloud.
Today, a cloud based visualisation makes many things easier, but a high degree of expertise and IT knowledge is needed to make the devices communicate to clouds offered by the market today. In total, the Festo energy efficiency module reduces energy cost, and […]
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Eberhard Klotz is the head of the Industrie 4.0 campaign at Festo, a supplier of automation technology and industrial training and education programmes. In this article he discusses the company’s activities in IoT, its view of production of the future, benefits for original equipment makers (OEMs) and end-users and partners in industrial markets with Matt Wilkins, a senior analyst of IoT Research at Strategy Analytics
Matt Wilkins: Industrie 4.0 is a key aspect of the implementation of the Internet of Things in the industrial market, what does Industrie 4.0 mean to Festo?
Eberhard Klotz: At Festo we view Industrie 4.0 as the process through which we get to the production of the future. Festo has a holistic view of the changes in the production world, considers different perspectives and, in addition to technology, also takes other key points into account, such as the interaction between man and machine, and the issue of training.
Eberhard Klotz, Head of the Industrie 4.0 campaign at Festo
The real and virtual world are growing increasingly closer: modern information and communication technologies are merging with industrial processes, increasingly changing the production landscape and the interaction with individual customers.
Industry 4.0 brings together various activities under one umbrella and describes the change that is imposing new requirements on production systems, machines and people in many areas. Festo is part of the Industrie 4.0 steering team that includes government ministries, several official bodies, along with Siemens, Bosch, SAP and Deutsche Telekom.
MW: What does production of the future look like?
EK: The first thing is that production systems will be fully connected. There will be intelligent, selfregulating and self-controlling components for plug-and-produce. Production plants will be highly flexible, allow for economical manufacturing of small batch sizes, fast balancing of the workload in a production network – including logistics, and fast adjustment to the orders in hand.
Matt Wilkins, Strategy Analytics
Finally, there will be comprehensive condition monitoring which helps to avoid or reduce downtime and optimises maintenance procedures and mobile maintenance. Essentially the faster we can be aware of an issue and analyse it, the faster we can implement a repair before a minor issue becomes a major one. Digital twins and a virtual set-up of a smart factory also allow pattern matching and detecting random errors, thus optimising downtime as well as process optimisation online.
MW: If Industrie 4.0 is the process which takes us to the production of the future, that must surely require a constant focus on refining and developing?
EK: Festo has been at the forefront of factory automation for many years. The research department helps shape the production systems of the future. So it is looking at mechatronics, the latest simulation technologies, microsystem technology and intelligent components for Industrie 4.0. In our view innovation management creates the necessary framework to turn good ideas, knowledge and technology into successful commercial products.
Our research activities include the ENTOC (Engineering Tool Chain for Efficient and Iterative Development of Smart Factories) research project, where the aim is to significantly reduce the time taken and complexity […]
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New Efficiencies More Important Than Ever In Manufacturing
- New Efficiencies More Important Than Ever In Manufacturing
The pace of change in manufacturing today is faster than it ever has been before. The world has seen three industrial revolutions already; first, when textile manufacturers in 18th century Britain mechanized production, second, when Henry Ford created the assembly line in manufacturing automobiles, and third, when automation and computers were first introduced into factories. Technology during these shifts advanced along a linear path. The Fourth Industrial Revolution, the introduction of cyber physical systems, is advancing at an exponential rate.
Technology is moving rapidly and manufacturers are investing heavily because they know that finding new efficiencies will be the only way to stay competitive in the future. The industry is shifting from finding efficiencies by cutting down labor costs (and moving as much as possible to cheaper labor markets), toward a world where highly-skilled workers and highly-automated factories guided by IoT will have the competitive edge. The latest industrial revolution means providing higher quality components at lower prices, while talent and technology will give manufacturers their edge.
- Image source: Forbes
When it comes to metrology, new equipment and software are unlocking new capabilities in coordinate measuring machines. Automated coordinate measuring machines, 3D laser scanners, real-time data collection, and software that can predict equipment collisions and adjust errors are all becoming a reality on shop floors across the globe. It’s probably time that you update your CMM measuring machine if you want to keep your technology competitive. In the race to build higher quality components to compete with both lower-cost labor markets and economies like Japan and Germany (which have a lead on automation), North American shops will have to take a close look at their metrology equipment.
Coordinate measuring machines are the cornerstone of your Quality Assurance department and you need technology that’s not just highly accurate but also efficient. While coordinate measuring machines themselves are not very different today than they were ten years ago, new software and equipment has made major strides. Here are just some of the updates you may want to consider, available from metrologists like Canadian Measurement Metrology (CMM):
Multi-sensor Coordinate Measuring Machines – There’s more to today’s coordinate measuring machines that just touch-trigger probes. Touch-trigger probes are precise but slow, but now metrologists use laser scanners in conjunction with touch probes to drastically speed things up and even make automated measurement possible.
Polyworks – Polyworks received a 2017 software update that introduces a suite of new capabilities to speed up your QA process. It’s based on “control-centric reviewing workflow,” which means rapid data collection and real-time collision analysis. It can help you introduce one of the core design principles of Industry 4.0: decentralized decision-making. Ask about Polyworks and software training at metrology shops like CMM for more details.
3D Laser Scanners – 3D laser scanners provide fast, precise measurements and can be used on a portable arm, on a coordinate measuring machine, or on their own. They come in two basic types: lasers scanners and structured light scanners. While laser scanners use guided laser beams to calculate distance, structured light scanners measure using projected patterns of light with a camera.
With these tools, you can bring your shop to a new level of accuracy and efficiency. Speed up inspections and guarantee higher quality components.
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Qualcomm Incorporated announced Cristiano R. Amon, executive vice president, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and president of QCT, has been promoted to president of Qualcomm Incorporated, effective January 4, 2018. In his new role, Amon will formulate and drive key strategies for growing the company in both Qualcomm’s core businesses, as well as new business opportunities. Amon will also continue to lead the QCT business, reporting to Steve Mollenkopf, chief executive officer of Qualcomm Incorporated.
“Cristiano’s unique mix of business, engineering and operational skills and experience make him ideally suited to continue driving Qualcomm’s technology and leadership positions across mobile, IoT, automotive, edge computing and networking – and lead the transition to 5G,” said Steve Mollenkopf, chief executive officer of Qualcomm Incorporated.
Amon joined Qualcomm in 1995 as an engineer and has subsequently held numerous business and technical leadership roles. Prior to Qualcomm, Amon served as the chief technical officer of Vésper, a wireless operator in Brazil and held positions at NEC, Ericsson and Velocom Inc. Amon holds a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from UNICAMP – Universidade Estadual de Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil.
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SixDomainChain Foundation, a Singapore-based IoT blockchain organization, recently announces the launch of SDChain Initiative to serve East Asian IoT markets with innovative blockchain 4.0 technology. SDChain, an IoT blockchain commercialization initiative, aims to create a partnership ecosystem of sharing trustable IoT digital assets generated from devices, that integrates international standards of IoT six-domain model and […]
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