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108 PCB007 MAGAZINE I FEBRUARY 2021 Feature by Kurt Palmer BURKLE NORTH AMERICA Statistical process control (SPC) is a meth- od of quality control which employs statisti- cal methods to monitor and control a process. is helps to ensure that the process operates efficiently, producing more specification- conforming products with less waste [1] . e concepts of statistical process con- trol were initially developed by Dr. Walter Shewhart of Bell Laboratories in the 1920s, and were expanded upon by Dr. W. Edwards Dem- ing, who introduced SPC to Japanese industry aer WWII. Aer early successful adoption by Japanese firms, SPC has now been incorpo- rated by organizations around the world as a primary tool to improve product quality by reducing process variation [2] . e use of statistical process control (SPC) was initially ignored in North America for quite some time, but in the 1960s and moving forward, SPC—using control charts to con- trol every step of a process—became an in- tegral part of any manufacturing process. Dr. Robert Deming was the evangelist who advo- cated the concept of eliminating final inspec- tion requirements if every step in the process was monitored. At the beginning, this program met management headwinds, but over time, the concept, when adopted from senior man- agement down through an organization, has proven to reduce costs and improve quality. From our experience, and with the devel- opment of a host of modern electronic inno- vations, we have witnessed this program suc- cessfully interfaced directly from the machine to an engineer's computer and stored as histo- ry to the cloud. e Bürkle LFC roller coating machine is another example of how a coating process can be monitored in "real time." e variables for coating include: • Transport speed • Roller coating speed • Viscosity of the liquid material • Groove depth and geometry • Doctor roll pressure • Application roll pressure The Benefits of Statistical Process Control

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