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Posted on Oct 6, 20202
Like with other sectors, the automotive industry faces many challenges such as bridging the gap between IT and OT and offering resources for content design, application development, and logical configuration. Around the same time, automobile components manufacturers are the most ambitious players in the market when it comes to smart factories – they spend more than any other sector, and set higher goals for their digital manufacturing business. Car parts production involves fairly high-value, high-volume, and high-complex goods.
OEMs in this industry usually design vehicles, then outsource the production of many systems, subsystems, and parts, and then assemble, paint, finish and test the final product themselves. Compared with most other industries, this makes the maintenance of digital threads and digital twins from design to production to the final product more complicated. In this article, we will analyze the status quo of the smart solution in automobile components manufacture and also take a look at what the future might hold.
How can smart manufacturing technology suppliers not only solve a large number of problems they solve in each industry but also deal with other challenges posed by automobiles and automobile components? To do this, they need to have an in-depth understanding of the challenges, solutions with clear business cases, and stakeholder management strategies for all relevant aspects, from factory floor workers and their unions to OEM supervisors, IT departments, and suppliers from all parties.
Most OEMs and their suppliers know that they need to transform. The competition will push them forward, but every new technology must have commercial significance, not build bridges with stakeholders. Smart manufacturing for automobile components processes has made surprising progress.
Overall, however, few automobile component manufacturers have turned their enthusiasm for new smart technologies into real progress-according to the research results, nearly half of smart factory plans are struggling, and the digital maturity of their manufacturing operations is below the standard level. By the end of 2022, only about 24% of the factories in this industry will become smart factories, and less than half of the American factories will invest more than 250 million US Dollars in smart factories.
:: Read more : Automobile parts require precision
Automobile components manufacturers who transition into smart manufacturing often involve their leadership team, developing their talents, and investing in the right fields. The "right field" refers to those smart factory components which are vital to the future, such as intelligence in manufacturing and predictive maintenance.
When they follow the pace of what we call "digital rulers," even more manufacturers will exploit this opportunity with success. In particular, this group has production operations that operate at a high level of digital maturity. Automotive industries are hoping that they will take advantage of $160 billion in productivity gains per year by 2023 by transitioning to smart factories.
These new automobile components production technologies include advanced automation, cloud computing, 5G networks, virtual assembly technology, autonomous vehicles, remote maintenance portals, collaborative robots and drones, and 3D printing. The report said that car companies can already use existing smart technologies to significantly increase productivity. However, although automakers are keen to adopt new technologies, only a few have implemented these changes. Even if it lags in implementation, the automotive industry is seriously considering the shift to smart technology.
Smart manufacturing is the connection or coordination of different stages and technologies to improve operational efficiency. Although several common equipment types are used in this field, it is not necessarily related to a specific technology or equipment type. Take IoT sensors for instance: in automobile manufacturing, factories often contain different systems that work together to create a single type of product or vehicle. For example, you may have IT or computer software, smart motors and robot components, vehicle sensors, other hardware, or even product management systems.
However, in most cases, conventional manufacturing methods for automobile components treat these systems as independent systems. They are divided or isolated from each other. Smart manufacturing will use modern data sharing technology to combine these parts of the factory to increase efficiency, reduce costs, and increase production. In addition, the technology can be used to track and make precise adjustments during the assembly phase, thereby providing a more personalized customer experience. Imagine a customer ordering automobile components through an online storefront and then individually choosing the different upgrades or options they want instead of choosing a standard bulk package.
Before implementing any new strategy or system, you must assess the status quo. What technologies can you use to increase your automobile components production efficiency? How can you help your factory workers and make their job easier? What innovative forms of customer support do you want to increase? These are very important questions when choosing the smart manufacturing upgrades of your automobile components factory. In manufacturing, smart sensors will provide the greatest benefits. In fact, they are no different from traditional sensors, they are still designed to collect and report data about machinery and equipment, processes, or efficiency. What makes them more accessible is an open connection to the local network or data system.
In addition, when used in conjunction with a machine learning platform, information can be viewed remotely and can be fully automated. Traditionally, the rotary screw air compressor used is, for example, manually operated. However, with the help of smart interconnected systems, automation can be achieved with almost no supervision while maintaining reliability and accuracy. The next step is to ensure that there is a persistent connection to the local network or infrastructure. Every IoT or connected device you deploy needs to access the network to report, collect, and process data.
If you don't have a stable network or internet gateway, this is also something you will need to invest in. To do this, you need to ensure that you also have proper data security and network protection. This may require internal IT and security teams to monitor and maintain your network. This is followed by the use of appropriate tools, such as user authentication for access to the network or system, firewalls and monitoring tools to control when problems occur, and backup systems to keep data safe in the event of failure or interruption. Ultimately, a team of engineers and workers will have to decide how to deploy smart manufacturing systems in their automobile components factory.
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