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12 SMT007 MAGAZINE I APRIL 2020 synchronized without the need for human tasks. Accordingly, visibility, traceability, pre- dictability, and sophisticated simulations— coupled with speed, agility, and flexibility— are the underlying characteristics of intelligent manufacturing. In practice, the ultimate manufacturing mer- its—faster delivery, customized products, less waste, higher yield, lower cost, and on- demand production—can be achieved by a smart factory. As a result, production defects are prevented; preventive maintenance can be pre-scheduled; supply-chain efficiency is optimized; and new product innovation is facilitated. This on-demand production can only be accomplished by seamlessly leveraging the powerful tools of a cyber-physical system— namely, AI, IoT, and data analytics. Cyber- physical systems communicate with each other using IoT enabled machine-to-machine communication, machine-to-human interac- tion. With connected IoT devices, factories can gather data in real-time. AI capable of col- lecting and processing a colossally large vol- ume of data can analyze the data to provide intelligence based on analytical algorithms. With the convergence of AI and IoT, an intelli- gent network of devices can be created, capa- ble of gathering and analyzing data remotely and translating that data into intelligence and actionable steps locally. For example, AI can identify quality prob- lems, such as detecting missing circuit board components and making necessary remedia- tions. It can also analyze data from raw materi- als, production lines, finished products, main- tenance records, and customer complaints. IoT can capture data on workers' safety, energy usage, temperature, and output. IoT devices can also be outfitted on checkpoints in the dis- tribution process, where they can keep track of parts and products as they are shipped from factory to warehouse and beyond. This also enables the formulation of reliable inventory forecasts, the avoidance of unscheduled down- times, and the timely reaction to unexpected changes in the production line. Factories' ability to keep track and control of inventory in the actual dollar value of inven- tory and days of inventory is crucial to the bot- tom line of a company. Doing well in this area mitigates the mishap of production outpacing demand as well as eschews cash flow traps. Using cyber-physical systems, supply chains will be fully integrated and automated. Cyber- physical systems deployed throughout the value chain generate the linkage between data and material flows, creating the complete vis- ibility of the supply chain, in stationary or in transit state. In maintenance, the connected, intelligent machines can trigger maintenance processes autonomously. Data analytics aids the detection of process inefficiencies, thus reducing production costs. IoT sensors embed- ded within the products and machines pro- vide information about actual product perfor- mance during their service life through data exchange between the production line and the product. Combining data generated and ana- lytics employed offers the capability in pre- dictive maintenance and quality. Additionally, how customers use the products can be moni- tored, which helps companies in customer ser- vices, warranty management, as well as prod- uct design. Cellular technology (5G or more advanced) and augmented vision play a key role as well. The network enables a large number of machines and robots (when applicable) to be connected to the local boutique net- In practice, the ultimate manufacturing merits—faster delivery, customized products, less waste, higher yield, lower cost, and on-demand production—can be achieved by a smart factory.

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