This is my first contribution to "Industree 4.0" and am honored to be asked to submit content. I have been in the process control industry since 1984 and have seen a number of changes over that period. If you are also in this industry and receive the publications and emails that I do, you have been seeing a lot of new terminology over the past few years. My goal in these articles is to help understand this terminology and technology.
I will begin by using the words of Neil Mead, editorial director at Datateam Business Media. You can go to www.4sightbook.com and download a free copy of "4.0 sight: Digital industry around the world" (which I recommend), which includes the following from Neil:
"The digital factory of the future will be full of smart, connected machines that require less human intervention and that can be controlled and monitored remotely. Through the use of sensors, algorithms and software, they will also be able monitor themselves and the process they are undertaking, while constantly adjusting for maximum efficiency and producing data that can be analysed and acted upon by a computer running sophisticated manufacturing execution software (MES)."
If you have been in the process control industry as long as I have, the first thing that might pop into your head after reading this is: "What are we talking about?"
The factories of 1984 that I began my career in had smart and connected machines. The first paper machine I worked on had scanners with very sophisticated sensors using nuclear sources which sent profiles and other data to a processor for control and display.
This required less human intervention than manual sampling and adjustment to basis weight valves and steam pressures.
The first project I worked on was a bleach plant advanced control using sensor data to predict CEk (Kappa number after chlorine and extraction stage). I would consider this use of sensors, algorithms, and software.
As a practical matter, these applications had to monitor themselves and the process to alert operations to potential problems. To do otherwise would have made them unusable.
The objective of controls from the origin of the discipline is to make constant adjustments to maximize efficiency.
That first paper machine I worked on produced a lot of data which was analyzed to identify process or control problems
That data was also fed into a millwide computer system to enable management to see how we are operating and make decisions.
Is anything new here?
Yes. While my prior analysis may be perceived as a dig at Neil, it really isn't. There is new technology and a new mindset to control systems, the data they produce, and the way we operate. The challenge is to see past the "fluff" to get what is real and new. If we fail to meet that challenge, we are prone to making bad investments in vaporware and myth. That challenge is what Neil recognizes in his subsequent comments:
"There is no doubt that the term Industry 4.0 has been used and abused by some companies as a marketing tool.
Professing to offer 'Industry 4.0 ready' or 'IoT compliant' products sounds impressive, but it's what they can
actually provide to the end-user that's important. Much of this digital technology isn't new, but what the Industry 4.0 concept has done is bring a number of disparate technologies together in a joined-up offering that allows manufacturers to better understand the features and benefits of digitalisation and smart factory solutions."
I agree with Neil that there are terms that have been abused and much of the technology is not new. I believe if we are going to make good decisions we need to know what we are talking about.
My intention in each of my subsequent articles is to address one buzzword at a time and make it real. Yes, this is a bit of a teaser but it also is a practical approach. I get lost in buzzwords, especially when there isn't clear definition and they are strung together in a way that make an article, paragraph, or sentence incomprehensible. These buzzwords need to be put into real terms that can be properly understood and put in the right context in order to change them from words that confuse us to words that inform us. Trying to define every buzzword at once seems overwhelming for the author and the reader. By taking one buzzword at a time, I am hoping we can over time reach some common understanding of what we are talking about.
I look forward to my next article, and I hope you will too.
Pat Dixon is a proven process control expert, project manager, and leader, serving to free up money in an industrial facility. Instrumentation, process control systems, and advanced control optimization in manufacturing provides the opportunity to free up resources and maintain high product quality, comply with environmental regulations, and protect the safety of workers and the community. To provide these benefits, Pat has served as an engineer, manager, and leader with industrial manufacturing sites, control system vendors and integrators, and as a consultant. Also a leader of non-profit organizations and in public service.
Why, in the current technology and policy environment, an optimistic but cautious approach presently makes business sense for most.
According to the experts, everyone should be on the Industry 4.0 bandwagon by now. Consultants and solution providers have only ratcheted up the apprehension among executives.
The warning: If you're clinging to old ways of operating and delivering value, you're already losing.
No one doubts that the union of physical and cyber technologies will eventually lead to the development of global systems that create dramatic efficiencies and enable business leaders to make more informed integrated decisions. But at this point, manufacturers who haven't figured out how to apply Industry 4.0 across their companies aren't falling behind yet, and they're far from alone.
Bottom line: The caution among manufacturers in going digital isn't about a lack of internal strategic alignment and short-term focus. The world of manufacturing is complex. There are countless pieces to this puzzle, and the technology piece is likely not the hardest to solve.
Stephen Gold is President and Chief Executive Officer, Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI). Previously, Gold served as senior vice president of operations for the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) where he provided management oversight of the trade association's 50 business units, member recruitment and retention, international operations, business development, and meeting planning. In addition, he was the staff lead for the Board-level Section Affairs Committee and Strategic Initiatives Committee.
Manufacturing industry working to change minds
Today, manufacturing is a vibrant industry. It contributes 12 percent of U.S. GDP and employs roughly 12 million Americans. There are incredible jobs in manufacturing requiring a variety of skill sets, from production and distribution to engineering and environmental health and safety. And, it's a growing industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' August report, manufacturing has added 159,000 jobsin 2018.
At the same time, the most recent BLS report on job openings shows that manufacturers posted 506,000 job openings in July. On average for 2018 then, nearly 500,000 jobs have gone unfilled every month in U.S. manufacturing. With a skills gap that's also growing, it's no wonder the Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte have predicted there could be as many as 2 million unfilled positions in manufacturing by 2025.
As an industry, manufacturing is working to overcome negative perceptions. Generational stories of your "grandfather's manufacturing" as well as depictions of sweatshops by Hollywood have not been kind to us. With annual events like National Manufacturing Day in October, and innovative partnerships with schools, the industry is making headway to overcome those perceptions. We're talking more about the many new technologies impacting manufacturing today, like robotics, the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence.
"Manufacturing 4.0" is a commonly heard buzzword that represents the infusion of even more technology into the workplace. Manufacturing leaders are truly pulling together to change the mindsets of today's young talent - the next generation of manufacturers. We are looking for ways to share the excitement careers in manufacturing can bring to prospective employees as well as enticing them to see the challenge and value careers in manufacturing bring.
But overcoming negative perceptions and attracting new talent to the industry are just two pieces of the puzzle in terms of solving the skills gap and the workforce shortage we face. We're continuously looking for new ways to create efficiencies and more productivity, implement state-of-the-art processes and equipment, decrease cycle times and increase made-to-order solutions - all very positive changes for our customers that take investment.
As manufacturing leaders invest more in their factories, the skills gap will continue to widen. This means we need to not only attract new talent with new skills, but we must - as an industry - invest in reskilling or upskilling our current talent.
This is a challenge all its own - one we should also meet head on. Manufacturing leaders must boost team members' confidence in embracing technology. We must offer training programs on new equipment, or even for new digital tools that help us understand how our business is running. Through tuition reimbursement programs, we can help current and future talent become comfortable with computers, learn how to code and identify process improvements. The opportunities in manufacturing are exciting for both current and future employees, and empowering our workforce has never been more important.
The truth is, if you engage people in the right way, the value they can bring to your company goes beyond words - and may even trump technology! Manufacturing workforces have creativity, expertise and knowledge that can phenomenally impact business - and that's why it's important to provide people at all levels with opportunities to voice their opinions. Our industry needs leaders at the floor level, the team leader level and the management level who demonstrate care, compassion, understanding and empathy to create an environment where people share so that we can learn, understand and take action to best support our workforce. If manufacturers want the best of what their people have to offer, engaging them is paramount in the new manufacturing world. It's essential to both attract and to retain.
We'll always have those tools and equipment that are foundational to building our quality products, whatever they may be. And we well know the importance of maintaining those and increasing their efficiencies to produce the best products and solutions we can for our customers. What we can't forget is that it's just as important to invest in our people - current and future - as well as engage them, letting them know that we want their hearts and minds just as much as their hands and time.
Chris E. Muhlenkamp is senior vice president of global operations and integrated supply chain for Allegion, a global security products and solutions provider with Colorado Springs operations employing 500 people.
The Smart Way to Prepare Your Workforce for Industry 4.0
Training for digital fluency, technological savviness and data analytics.
Is automation the job-killer that it's been made out to be in the past Maybe not, according to a recent L.E.K. Consulting manufacturing survey.
Automation is motivating the decision-makers we surveyed across seven manufacturing industries to actively invest in their workforce, and four out of five say they're preparing for an increase in automation technology.
As we wrap up another great year and look forward to the next, I sat down wit
h some of my colleagues to discuss trends we can expect to see in 2019.
One of the big anticipations for us is how the Internet of Things will be enhanced by wider deployments of 5G networks around the globe. We're excited to see how it will enable new and innovative use cases in areas like autonomous vehicles and Industrial IoT.
Warren Chaisatien, global director of IoT customer engagement marketing, shared that industries will see great advancements enabled by the growth of 5G networks, and further enhanced by technologies like robotics and automation, virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) and artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML).
"5G will enhance the capabilities of edge and cognitive computing, which will be particularly vital to certain applications, like self-driving cars, where computing must be performed as close to the device as possible to reduce latency of decision making. The list of industries ready to take their businesses to the next level with 5G finally becoming available is long, including manufacturing, transport/logistics, public safety/emergency and smart cities," says Warren.
Field services will benefit from AR enabled by 5G
One area that will particularly benefit from 5G is field services, made possible by AR. Experienced engineers are hard to find and those that organizations do have can only visit so many remote sites in a year. Enabled by 5G and the speed with which data can travel through the air, AR will allow engineers-in-training to be able to have instant intelligence about a device on which they may be working just by pointing their tablet towards it. This will allow them to rely less on sheer experience and intuition but still be able to make informed decisions. Seasoned engineers will be empowered to accomplish more in less time with access to those same, instant insights provided by AR applications, powered by 5G.
Automation is the key to IoT's future
The Internet of Things is certainly expanding at an amazing rate and this will only accelerate as 5G availability increases. According to our
November 2018 Mobility Report, by 2024, the number of connected devices is forecasted to exceed 22 billion. This is an astounding number. How will organizations manage them all?
Head of IoT Security, Bodil Josefsson, forecasts growth in automation to not only manage the devices themselves, but also the securing of them throughout the lifecycle. Not only is a team incapable of manually managing these devices due to sheer volume, but the same goes for securing them.
"IoT services will only increase in complexity with many ecosystem partners contributing to create an end-2-end service. In order to have a secure e2e service, security needs to be managed all the way from device through the network to the user. The fact that many devices will have limited capabilities to handle security, makes it possible to use these unprotected devices to launch attacks. We will see further initiatives such as the
CTIA Cybersecurity certification program to ensure that only certified devices get connected. "Automated security compliance and intrusion prevention will also see wider adoption, greatly assisting organizations in maintaining secure uptime," says Bodil.
A shift in offerings
The notion of managing of billions of devices and the challenges that come with it prompted Warren to forecast that we will see a shift in telecom service provider offerings to meet this need. "In 2018, it's become common for telecom service providers to offer IoT connectivity. Next year, we will see many of them move to the next level, offering enterprises the ability to manage connected devices, but also managing and securing those devices' entire lifecycles," comments Warren.
A greater shift in business and pricing models
Additionally, we will see more momentum in businesses changing their models - from selling products to selling services. Organizations will no longer buy just a machine or pump, but rather the service it performs, for example. This shift is having a fundamental impact on how IoT services are offered and priced by telecom service providers. For more insights, read our recently released
Developing Viable IoT Business Models report.
2019 promises to be an exciting year for stakeholders in the IoT ecosystem. Read more about
Massive IoT to learn more.
To learn more about trends we can expect to see in the coming year, please read our
2018 Mobility Report.
Warren Chaisatien is Global Head of IoT Customer Engagement Marketing, leading Ericsson's engagements with telecom service providers on IoT business and technology strategies.
From the invention of the wheel to the birth of the digital revolution, innovation has been the main driving force in the development of the modern manufacturing industry. With each passing era, new technologies are introduced into the industrial world, keeping the manufacturing sector in a state of constant change. As the technologies change, so do the facilities and factories that contain them.
While it's impossible to fully predict what the factories of tomorrow will look like, what do the current technological trends tell us about the manufacturing industry's trajectory going forward?
Constant Stream of Data
sensors, the factory of the future will be able to monitor and report on everything from individual machines to entire production line systems to environmental factors in the factory. This data would then be stored in the cloud and analyzed using specialized software.
Kristin Manganello is a Thomas Insights staff writer for Thomas. Prior to working at Thomas Kristin received a bachelor's degree in English from Rutgers University, and worked various writing and editing jobs in a wide range of markets. While she thoroughly enjoys writing about tech trends and how they relate to the manufacturing industry, fiction writing is her true number one passion.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is everywhere these days, it seems, as businesses rush to capitalize on this newest digital Gold Rush and consumers flock to purchase smart gadgets that they hope will enhance their lives. Companies representing a range of verticals are exploring the IoT's potential, and edge computing stands ready to enable some of the most exciting innovations yet. Here's why the IoT's golden opportunities lie at the edge and how businesses are already capitalizing on them.
The IoT, Big Data, and the Need for Rapid Processing
The IoT is generating massive quantities of data that businesses can take advantage of in a variety of ways, from enhancing the customer experience (which directly boosts bottom-line growth) to product enhancements and even identification of new business models and opportunities in the market. Some IoT products cannot wait for their data sets to be processed and analyzed in the cloud, however-that is, not if they're to provide any meaningful use to the consumer. To provide maximum value in a timely fashion, these data must often be processed quickly at the edge.
A hybrid technologist-writer with a career spanning back to the early 1990s, Rose de Fremery was IT Director for a highly regarded international human rights organization based in New York City. She has been very active in the nonprofit technology realm, forming communities of practice for fellow nonprofit technology leaders and sitting on the board of Idealware, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing unbiased technology research and support to the community.
Coming up next month...
IIoT, Smart Connected Assets, and the Pulp & Paper Industry
Wireless Sensors Dominate Most IoT Applications
Bringing Superior Value To Metals And Paper With The IoT
and much more
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