SMT007 Magazine

SMT-July2016

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30 SMT Magazine • July 2016 After two or three years of hearing about In- dustry 4.0, many companies now have active Industry 4.0, Internet of Manufacturing (IoM), or smart factory projects. In each case, different approaches were taken that appeared to best fit the project requirements and that would deliver the intended benefits versus the cost and effort investment needed. Like a game of chess, the first move can be the most important. Let's take a look at the most common approaches adopted so far, and check in to see how things are going, what can be learned from the experiences, and how things could be done better. The earliest adopters of any new idea are of- ten motivated by more than simply a provable return on investment. The search is on for the proof of concept, to show industry leadership, and to move toward a technology that in the future should bring future competitiveness. The company size, allocation of IT resources, the systems and machines currently in use, whether OEM or EMS, and the sector in which the com- pany is doing business determine the approach to be taken. These approaches can be more or less summarized into the following categories: 1) In-house development 2) Application of an existing generic standard 3) The machine vendor environment 4) Middleware 5) An established MES solution 6) The application of OML (Open Manufacturing Language). However, there is no best solution. Each of these are valid solutions in certain conditions, and we have to remember that each represents a pioneering attitude that only the most progres- sive of companies have been able to consider. Looking at what might be the average experi- ence today within each of these categories of so- lutions has flagged some interesting issues and potential solutions. In-House Development The headline stories for smart factory inter- nal development projects come from Foxconn and Flex, who each presented their achieve- ment of a model smart factory at the recent IoM event in San Jose and at the IPC APEX EXPO in Las Vegas, respectively. The largest EMS compa- nies in the world are among the first adopters to attract new business and reduce operational costs. In both presentations, their results were compelling. The achievement of linking equip- ment their internal systems and the use of the resultant information seems perfectly in line with their expectations. Even for companies of this magnitude, one of the key challenges was acquiring data from all of the different pro- cesses on the shop-floor. Having considerable purchasing power at their disposal, they were able to work with machine vendors to mutually by Michael Ford MENTOR GRAPHICS Industry 4.0: Making the First Move THE ESSENTIAL PIONEER'S SURVIVAL GUIDE

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