As digitization of the factory catches on, automation continues to be a focus, says PMMI Business Intelligence.
A new report from PMMI, the 2017 Evolution of Automation, predicts adoption of real-time data collection, edge computing and cloud analytics.
“One day the machines on the plant floor will talk to each other, take corrective action to maintain maximum uptime, schedule repairs and order inventory—automatically and autonomously,” says one industry consultant.
That is the target everyone is shooting for, but how far along the evolutionary curve are packaging and processing OEMs in delivering automated solutions to their end users?
Though some machines are already connected, many are not. Advancements in Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies will provide machine-to-machine (M2M) connection as well as machine-to-people. Edge computing will be used for on-site data analysis to improve operations insights and cloud computing will be used for Big Data analysis across the enterprise.
The trend shows all companies are moving toward digitalization and will ramp up in the next five years. This will continue into the next decade.
“Most companies still react to maintenance needs now,” says one senior controls engineer for an OEM. “But in the future, there will be more predictive maintenance utilizing sensors and warnings.”
“Increasing utilization of OEE (overall equipment effectiveness) is a 10-year goal,” says a production manager at a small food company. “We will get a user interface, achieve CIP and have remote connectivity in the next five years.”
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The 65-page study covers what consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies want from OEMs, and how CPGs can work more effectively with machinery and materials providers to develop complex systems that are easy to maintain and operate.
Download the report from PMMI Business Intelligence, 2017 Evolution of Automation.