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12 SMT Magazine • July 2016 Five words speak for the essence of electronics: smart, mobility, connectivity, wearability, and innovation [2] . Innovation has been the name of the game. It spurs an unprecedented growth of exponential technology during the period of the third industrial revolution. The Fourth Industrial Revolution The genesis of the term, fourth industrial resolution, also dubbed Industry 4.0, was root- ed in the German federal government's high- tech strategy in 2011. Industry 4.0 will leverage the internet, digital technologies and quantum sciences to drive further into autonomous, in- telligent cyber-physical systems. As Industry 4.0 is evolving, it is fitting to define it as the get-together assembly of cyber- physical systems, cloud technology, internet of things and internet of services, and its integra- tion and interaction with humans in real-time to maximize value creation. Through the fusion of the physical and the virtual world, interoper- ability, advanced artificial intelligence and au- tonomy will be integral parts of the new indus- trial era. In this era, fascinating technological developments are underway or will be pursued in both military and commercial sectors in the U.S. and around the world. Commercial Sector— Intelligent Manufacturing In the commercial sector, rigidity is out, flexibility is in; stiffness is out, agility is in. Slug- gishness is out, and swiftness is in. Responding to the evolving new industrial era, delivering customized products with flexible, modular production flow at an optimal economics be- comes necessary. Manufacturing companies need to devel- op a deep understanding of the technologies, translating business objectives into technology roadmaps targeting at operational efficiency. This will be accomplished by leveraging the ma- chine-to-machine communication, machine- to-human interaction, cloud computing and advanced analytics. For instance, intelligent machines can trigger maintenance processes autonomously and are capable of predicting failures; data analytics aids to detect process in- efficiencies, thus reducing production cost. I cannot emphasize enough that inventory management is imperative to the success of manufacturing operations, and its optimization is paramount to the healthy balance sheet and cash flow, especially for raw-material-intensive businesses. Companies must keep track and control of both days of inventory as well as the actual dollar value of inventory. Doing well in this area mitigates the mishap of production outpacing demand as well as eschews cash flow trap. Using cyber-physical systems, supply chains will be fully integrated and automated. Cyber physical systems deployed throughout the val- ue chain enable the linkage between data and material flows, creating the complete visibility of the supply chain, in stationary or in transit state. This also facilitates the formulation of re- liable inventory forecasts, the avoidance of un- scheduled downtimes, and the timely reaction to unexpected changes in production. Visibility, traceability, predictability and so- phisticated simulations, coupled with speed, agility and flexibility are the underlying charac- teristics of intelligent manufacturing. Military Sector In preparation for the future, the U.S. De- partment of Defense recently unveiled tech- nology areas that will translate into opera- tional advantages. Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work recently unveiled five technol- ogy areas that will guide future investments in new weapon capabilities as well as drive organizational and operational experimen- THE FOURTH INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION (INDUSTRY 4.0): INTELLIGENT MANUFACTURING " Through the fusion of the physical and the virtual world, interoperability, advanced artificial intelligence and autonomy will be integral parts of the new industrial era. "

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