The manufacturing industry is in the midst of a digital revolution. This digital coming of age is helping manufacturers support remarkable industry demands and evolve to meet customer expectations. According to PwC’s 2016 Global Industry 4.0 Survey of industrial companies now the buzz around Industry 4.0 has moved from what some saw as PR hype in 2013 to investment and real results today. Respondents expect to significantly increase their portfolios of digital products and services; more than twice as many expect to be at an advanced level in this area by 2020 compared to today. Similarly, almost three-quarters of companies expect to have highly digitized horizontal and vertical value-chain processes in five years.
What is this Industry 4.0?
The term ‘Industry 4.0’ stands for the fourth industrial revolution. While Industry 3.0 focused on the automation of single machines and processes, Industry 4.0 focuses on the end-to-end digitization of all physical assets and integration into digital ecosystems with value chain partners. Generating, analyzing and communicating data seamlessly underpin the gains promised by Industry 4.0, which networks a wide range of new technologies to create value. Sometimes Industry 4.0 is also referred in terms like the industrial internet or smart digital factory of the future in various contexts.
Industry 4.0 is surely giving enterprises improved visibility of their industrial processes, ensuring that potential problems can be identified before they occur. However there are few hindrances. “Though the enterprise executives are hearing about all these gains promised by Industry 4.0, smart enterprise of the future, digital transformation & emerging advancements in technologies, they are struggling to develop a realistic and practical roadmap for driving & realizing this transformation to stay competitive. Also it’s not just about the technology. The biggest challenge of industrial leaders is the people& building an eco-system” – says Vijay Apsangi, Founder & CEO, ID4 Realms.
A Pune, India based technology-driven company, ID4 Realms with its extensive domain expertise is committed to Digital Transformation of Enterprises by Industry 4.0 enablement irrespective of industry. Be it automotive, power, healthcare, oil & gas, FMCG or many others where digitization is inevitable, ID4 through its technology & domain expertise, Industry 4.0 products, solutions and services collaborates closely with its customers to understand their pain areas and suggest tailor-made optimizations in affordable costs. ID4 methodology involves thorough review of the client’s existing systems, digital IQ analysis using questionnaires, identifyingtraining needs, building awareness before it can strategize, suggest, develop & implement any specific solution(s). To make this change management easier& accelerate IT/OT integrations,and deploy various Industry 4.0 solutions in quick time ID4 has developed its flagship framework –A SMART CONNECTED ENTERPRISE PLATFORM called iPROD.
IPROD which stands for “integrated PRODUCTIVITY” is a digital transformation platform that enables interoperability & collaboration between machines, equipment, people, processes & legacy software:
- Digitization and integration of vertical and horizontal value chains
iPROD helps digitize and integrate processes vertically across the entire organization, from product development and purchasing, through manufacturing – planning to finished goods, logistics and service. All data about operations processes, process efficiency and quality management, as well as operations planning are available real-time, supported by artificial intelligence, augmented reality and optimized in an integrated network. Horizontal integration stretches beyond the internal operations from suppliers to customers and all key value chain partners. It includes technologies from track and trace devices to real-time integrated planning, routing with execution.
- Digitization of product and service offerings
IPROD enabled digitization of products includes the augmenting existing products, e.g. by adding smart sensors or communication devices that can be used with data analytics tools, as well as the creation of new digitized products which focus on completely integrated solutions. By integrating new methods of data collection and analysis, companies are able to generate data on product use and refine products to meet the increasing needs of end-customers.
- Optimizing Processes
One of the primary steps in envisaging a Smart Enterpriseand implementing it is to optimize existing processes. All factories or plants make extensive use of automation. For e.g. PLC, Relays, AGVs, robots could be one for of automation. In some cases adding more sensors or capturing more data is unlikely to optimize these automated processes. In such cases history data of past trends may serve to predict operating conditions and take corrective measures in time. iPROD analytics can help you not only report this history data but also analyze & provide deeper insights that can help enterprise make quick decisions to prevent losses ahead of time.
The IPROD platform harnesses technology enhancements in IoT, M2M communication, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Edge devices, Controllers, Communication Protocols, Process Automation, Cloud Computing and offers a gamut of Industry 4.0 solutions that integrates vertical & horizontal value chains of an enterprise. Some of the key iPROD based ready off-the-shelf Smart Connected Enterprise Solutions offered by iD4 Realms include:
- Smart Industrial IoT–Sensor & Intelligent device driven Machine condition monitoring, Machine-2-Machine (M2M) communication, Data acquisition, Poka-yoke, KPI Monitoring
- Smart Supply Chain – Production Planning, Routing, Product genealogy, Part Traceability, Smart HMI, Quality Management, Digital History Cards, Downtimes, Dynamic Reports& Analytics.
- Smart Logistics & Traceability – Real-time location tracking, pallet/asset tracking, Indoor tracking, Warehouse Management
- Smart Workforce Efficiency management- Resource Optimization, Run Cards, Work Efficiency
- Smart Order Picking System – Pick 2 Light, Push 2 Light, Kitting Management
- Smart Maintenance – Preventive Maintenance, Tool Crib, Schedules, Predictive Maintenance
- Smart Dynamic Reporting, BI & Info-graphics– Simple statistical reporting to graphicalBI dashboards, KPIs – OEE, OLE, FPY etc. eGallery, eGamba& ANDON
- Smart Project Lifecycle Management – PLM, Document Management, Incidents, Collaboration
The above solutions can not only seamlessly integrate with each other but also integrate with your existing processes or legacy systems. With iPROD as a robust platform to its core, these solutions can be scaled-up for high-performance based on increasing loads or any further integration addendums&ensuring high-level of data security. ID4 not only employsbest development practices to build its digital products, solutions& servicessuch as AGILE, KANBAN etc. but also ensures their functions complywith best industry practices such as SIX SIGMA, KAIZEN or WCM (World Class Manufacturing) as preferred by the customer. All-in-all in the form of a synergistic global platform, iPROD permeates best lean practices permeating the digital mission of iPROD which is
“DIGITIZATION MANAGED .. PRODUCTIVITY DELIVERED”.
Vijay Apsangi, Founder &CEO, ID4 Realms says “Constant innovation and adaptability is the key to sustainable success. It is now inevitable for companies to recognize the need for a dynamic decision making platform that can give improved insights into their operations in real-time to help them react to situations, improve productivity, enhanced their responsiveness, reduce costs & adhere to regulatory compliances.. ID4 as your digital partner can help create a step-wise digital vision for your organization& IPROD is the tool that help you convert this vision into reality in un-imagined timelines”
Today iD4’s Digital Transformation solutions & services footprint spans across verticals like Automotive, Power, Chemical, FMCGs, Healthcare, Retail and Transportation Industry. A diversified, well-trained and motivated talent pool of people works cohesively to deliver these solutions based around a mature global delivery model to clients across the globe.
iPROD Industry 4.0 solutions can be implemented in a manual facility or a partially automated facility or a fully automated plant. Regardless of the state of automation, the implementation & integration is seamless. The platform can scale-up from operations sizes for SMEs who are looking to improve their quality and production at reduced costs to large enterprises that are looking to integrate advanced digital technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, IoT, Data Analytics, Cloud Computing to scale up their existing businesses further and improve their ROI.
Currently ID4 is working on new solutions based on integration of emerging cyber-physical systems with technologies such as Augmented Reality (AR). It is also working on Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) optimized solutions that can be used not only for improved indoor tracking of assets or people but also interact with them on-the-go.
By Kanak Prabha