Technological innovations are changing the face of the manufacturing industry through automation of processes, thus limiting the need for human intervention largely to operation of controls. Robotics, 3D printing, nanotechnology, cloud computing and the Internet of Things (IoT) are either on the horizon or have made their first foray into the world of manufacturing. The outcomes are high speed output with meticulous precision, unqualified efficiency, adaptive flexibility, and structured data with analytics.
Expertise in designing customer specific products with high speed transition from concept to pilot stage to prototype to commercialization is a specialised activity that is essential in eco-systems with truncated product life cycles. Shrinking the time taken to reach the market translates to earlier realization of business value.
Transformation of legacy production processes by harnessing digital technology will revolutionise shop-floor productivity. Intelligent manufacturing will integrate the product manufacturing cycle from material inflow and testing to delivery to the market. Seamless management will ensure minimal input wastage, lower costs and zero-defect products.
Production Cost Economics
Value added services for customers could include a suite that monitors energy consumption, equipment down-time, and material consumption armed with data analytics that enable streamlining of production processes to curtail costs.
Life Cycle Management
Post sales service will target boosting of revenues through sale of warranty programs, real time delivery and installation of spares, round-the-clock supply of breakdown services with control exercised from a digitally equipped base camp.
Internet of Things (IoT)
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a revolutionary invention that is expected to soon become the bastion of the manufacturing industry. The IoT is a protocol through which devices connected to the internet carry on intelligent conversations without the intervention of human beings. This accelerates the transfer of critical information. A defect or damage ping is transmitted instantaneously with the occurrence to another device for user attention. The early notification results in quicker remedial action, reduced down time of the equipment, reduction of material wastage, higher percentage of defect free production and lower costs.
The advantage of cloud computing is instant connectivity of disaggregated services – material and finished product inventories, accounts, marketing, machine availability, and production schedules, across diverse geographies. The cloud brings the data together and also shares data efficiently. Production planning, inventory management, marketing and costing become far more efficient and management is enabled to take more meaningful decisions. Through cloud computing, enterprises prune expenses, improve product quality, and ramp up overall production efficiencies.
Nanotechnology is sweeping across the manufacturing world delivering unprecedented benefits including faster processing, smaller memory cards with exponentially greater memory space, and greater flexibility and scalability in product design and features such as bandages that heal wounds faster and clothes that wear out slower and are adaptable to external weather conditions.
Supply Chain Management
Technology solutions will contribute to integration of the supply chain, with economy and efficiency in procurement planning, on-time delivery to the shop floor, flawless inventory management, and efficient logistics for order fulfillment.