Earlier this decade, the auto industry moved to lighten cars and trucks. It was supposed to be a competition between steel, long the dominant vehicle material, and aluminum. The latter got a boost when Ford Motor Co., Dearborn, Mich., bet big on aluminum, making aluminum bodies for its F-150 and Super Duty pickups.
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I experienced the end of the Third Industrial Revolution as I began my career in manufacturing. Closed government and private networks gave way to an open network called the Internet.
Information technology and operations technology are unlikely candidates for a successful marriage. But to ensure that manufacturers thrive in the digital age, OT and IT must find ways to work together—or to at least, as on Tinder, swipe right to indicate interest.
Manufacturers who have deployed the digital or smart factory have put down their pencils, found new uses for their clipboards and closed their spreadsheet programs in favor of using real-time data gleaned from condition monitoring of their machinery.
SHANGHAI—The $150 million “factory of the future” that the Swiss innovator ABB announced nearly a year ago is becoming reality in this enormous city’s Pudong New Area.
What do you think of when you hear the word factory? Probably some huge space, with machines humming and personnel walking around with notepads in their hands.
CGTech, a developer of verification and simulation software technology for the manufacturing industry, has appointed Mark Forth as Global Business Development Manager. Forth joined CGTech’s corporate headquarters in Irvine, Calif. on Oct. 1.
Industrial robots are becoming easier to program, more versatile, more cost-effective, more accurate and more mobile. These changes are lowering barriers to entry, shortening return on investment and making robots a more practical investment.
The second level of machining automation is here. It may not be at every shop or factory yet, but it’s coming.
With an influx of investment in digital factories, the playing field is changing and the ROI for digitizing production is becoming ever more apparent. However, restraints, such as company size and a disconnect between IT and OT, means the road to a successful digital transformation is one very few will be able to do alone.