IIoT, Industrie 4.0

Smart manufacturing driving industry to fourth industrial revolution

Surveys by MESA International indicate the manufacturing industry is making steady progress toward the fourth industrial revolution through smart manufacturing.
By Conrad Leiva February 4, 2019
Courtesy: MESA International

The manufacturing industry continues to make progress towards the vision of a fourth industrial revolution—a vision of revolutionary productivity increase. How? Through the the higher levels of automation, orchestration, and optimization enabled by Smart Manufacturing’s higher levels of connectivity and data transparency from each resource, plant, and partner in the new manufacturing ecosystem.

Figure 1: Contrasting MESA/IW 2017 Survey with recent MESA International 2018 poll on Smart Manufacturing initiatives. Courtesy: MESA International

Figure 1: Contrasting MESA/IW 2017 Survey with recent MESA International 2018 poll on Smart Manufacturing initiatives. Courtesy: MESA International

In Figure 1, we compare results from 2017 survey data compiled by IndustryWeek and MESA International to results from a 2018 poll running at MESA International’s website. At first glance, it might seem the number of Smart Manufacturing projects implemented are going down. However, that decrease in percentage is explained by an increase in the percentage of companies planning and researching the topic and a decrease in the percentage of companies not doing anything.

There is a higher percentage of companies working on Smart Manufacturing. However, there is a lot of work ahead since many companies are getting started with their first projects or are in the planning and research phases.

Is this a normal rate of progress for such a revolution? Or is there something slowing us down? That remains to be seen.

This article originally appeared on MESA International’s blog. MESA International is a CFE Media content partner. Edited by Chris Vavra, production editor, Control Engineering, CFE Media, cvavra@cfemedia.com.


Conrad Leiva
Author Bio: Conrad Leiva is VP Product Strategy and Alliances at iBASEt and is on the International Board of Directors at MESA International and is Chairman of the MESA Smart Manufacturing Working Group.