Test beds for smart manufacturing: Affordable, accessible, innovative, collaborative, connected
Test beds of smart manufacturing technologies by the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition (SMLC) aim to improve optimization, energy efficiency, safe and sustainable production, and supply chain connectivity. SMLC is working with its public-private partners on toolkits for smart manufacturing deployment, and open, advanced platforms, analytics, controls and sensors.
A related Dec. 15 webcast (archived thereafter) explains details, along with research on related topics (Industrial Internet of Things and Industrie 4.0 platforms): "Industrial Internet of Things Webcast Series 2016, Part Four: Smart manufacturing, IIoT, Industrie 4.0 case studies." Many research respondents said they are concerned their companies are not moving ahead quickly enough with new technology investments in related technologies.
In the webcast, Thomas F. Edgar, Ph.D., co-founder of SMLC, which develops software tools for saving energy in industrial plants, will explain various Smart Manufacturing (SM) efforts, including industry test beds, first-of-their-kind application toolkits for SM deployment, advanced high-fidelity modeling, open standards software and communication platforms, real-time data analytics and control systems, and advanced sensors.
SMLC also focuses on various areas of optimization, including asset utilization, zero downtime, zero defects, and reliable results. Further, the Coalition seeks to augment safe production, by improving safety, decreasing incidents, and enabling systems and processes to become more user friendly, according to Edgar’s presentation in the webcast.
Spending, concerns about competitors
Separately, Control Engineering and Plant Engineering (CFE Media) research findings on Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) also will be discussed, including related technologies and respondents’ concern that despite expected increase in spending, competitors may be gaining an advantage.
For example, research respondents estimated that their companies’ annual budget for IIoT, Industrie 4.0, and/or digital manufacturing initiatives was an average of $213,672, while 20% said they expect to spend more than $1 million. In addition, 40% of respondents are very or extremely concerned their company will lose market share or other competitive advantages over the next three years because other companies will see greater efficiencies from moving more quickly to adopt IIoT, Industrie 4.0, and/or digital manufacturing technologies.
Some test-bed efforts from two other industry organizations will be listed.
Three prior IIoT webcasts in the 2016 four-part series address other IIoT issues. See the archives here. An RCEP Professional Development Hour (PDH) is available for each in the series and other webcasts in the library.
Mark T. Hoske is content manager, CFE Media, Control Engineering, email@example.com.