IoT Technology for Manufacturing

IoT Technology for Manufacturing

Innovative solutions for smart manufacturing

The digital transformation process taking shape in the manufacturing world has given rise to new sector requirements, indicating the birth of a new industrial context.

We are in the Industry 4.0 era, a context in which the factory becomes "smart" and heads towards an increasingly integrated and automated production process.

In this scenario technologies such as the IoT applied to the manufacturing sector, as well as the Big Data Analytics, cloud computing and AI are playing a fundamental role in the evolution of the manufacturing sector.

The Internet of Things is rapidly transforming the manufacturing sector. The basic idea is that the presence that of a presence a variety of objects that take on a "digital voice" thanks to technologies like RFID tags (Radio-Frequency Identification), sensors, external operators, etc.

Through these technological components the objects are therefore able to interact with each other and cooperate to achieve common goals.

Thanks to this revolution, from now on, objects throughout the manufacturing process are able to communicate with each other and with the environment, exchanging data and information, carrying out processes that set certain actions in motion, actively participating in business processes.

Industry 4.0: Meaning and Advantages

Originally, the term Industry 4.0 was coined by the German government to describe a variety of technological changes identified in the production sector.

Despite the origin of the term, Industry 4.0 is actually phenomenon of global proportions that generated a real digital revolution in the manufacturing sector.

In general, the concept of industry 4.0 refers to the means of automation and the exchange of data in the production technologies, among which we’ll cite the following principal ones:

  • Cyber-physical systems,
  • Internet of Things,
  • Big Data and Analysis,
  • Augmented reality,
  • Additive production,
  • Simulation,
  • Integration of horizontal and vertical systems,
  • Autonomous robots,
  • Cloud computing

In this scenario the IoT has a central role because it facilitates the connection between objects, machines and environments.

Before this digital revolution, the manufacturing sector had already gone through powerful transformations starting from industry 1.0 until reaching today's 4.0.

We can see here the main phases that led to the introduction of IoT in manufacturing:

  • Industry 1.0: Introduction of water and steam (about 1780)
  • Industry 2.0: mass production was introduced as a principal means for production
  • Industry 3.0: Advent of the digital revolution during the 20th century
  • Industry 4.0: a global change through the digitization and automation of every part of the company, as well as the production process.

The companies that will be able adopt the concept of Industry 4.0 will make themselves even more competitive on the market.

The advantages of Industry 4.0 make it possible to make production more efficient and less expensive thanks to an easy exchange of information between products and production machines that act simultaneously and intelligently.

Industry 4.0 allows the manufacturing sector to digitize with integrated detection devices, thus allowing each productive sector to evolve much faster than any of the three previous industrial revolutions

The Smart Manufacturing Revolution

The Smart Manufacturing Revolution

The Smart Manufacturing, or intelligent production in Italian, is a term coined in the United States that today been increasingly used on a global level. 

Smart Manufacturing is a set of production practices that use data and information technology and communication technologies (ICT) to manage production operations.

In the fourth industrial revolution, the primary need is therefore to make all information pertaining to the production process accessible at any time, and smart manufacturing responds just to this need.

The advantages that SM provides in the production process are truly revolutionary:

  • Optimization of processes and increased productivity;
  • Monitoring of energy consumption for better energy efficiency;
  • Increasing your competitiveness in the market.

Thanks to this digitization process, the factory becomes connected in all its assets.

Thanks to a new generation of sensory technology, materials, means of transport, machines and products will be able to communicate with each other, providing immediately available and shareable information flows that favors, at the same time, these data-driven decision-making processes.

IoT and Manufacturing: Industry 4.0

IoT and Manufacturing: Industry 4.0

IoT technologies are increasingly used even in Italian industries as the data from 2019 also reports in which the Internet of Things (IoT) market in Italy had reached 6.2 billion euros, with a growth of + 24% in 2018.

More and more, thus, manufacturing companies are able to collect large amounts of data from objects and connected tools, exploiting them to optimize work processes.

The advantages are abundant, and you just need to think, for example, about the predictive maintenance of the machinery. In a modern "smart factory" it is, in point of fact, possible to take advantage of  the data relating to the operation of a piece of machinery to identify the moment of  the risk of failure and to intervene before it occurs.

The Industry of Things World 2017 Survey Report confirms that 88% of world leaders considers the IoT a determining factor for the company's success. In the "connected industries" the need arises for new pioneering solutions linked to IoT technologies.