Lights out factories

Lights out factories

Smart manufacturing with IoT

IOT smart manufacturing, building automation, Digital twin, lights out factories

The internet of things is making “things” smart. It has already had a huge impact on industrial processes, from assisting with automation to detecting manufacturing faults. It is also making smart deployment less expensive through the use of small sensors and reliance on cloud-based software. An IoT solution can help make hardware faster, smarter and more reliable. If the widespread existence of lights out factories is to become a reality, it will almost certainly have IoT to thank.

But creating lights out factories is not an easy task, and there are a number of considerations that need to be addressed before doing so. Production Machining made a list of topics to think about when transitioning to lights out, many of which can be answered with IoT solutions:

  • Reliability of equipment
  • Machine tools
  • Chip and coolant management
  • Material loading/unloading
  • Planned preventative maintenance
  • Remote monitoring

The good and the very bad

Bringing automated processes, or robots, to factories is already a reality. Machines getting rid of human jobs is something that has been occurring on a huge scale. The lights out factories, however, is something different altogether. From a business perspective, it can significantly reduce operational expenses (OPEX) after initially high capital expenditures (CAPEX). It gets rid of wages, building expenses and loss due to human error. But, as seen decades ago with General Motors, it can present more problems than benefits.

Not having someone on-site means machine failure can result in long periods of downtime, and huge losses.

A societal benefit of lights out factories is that it could amount to substantial energy savings. But the real question is what sort of impact replacing human labor with computers has on society. Many see the potential monetary benefits gained by companies as short of outweighing the detrimental impact joblessness has on individuals and society as a whole.

According to Natural News, the rise of automation is more likely to sharply divide the economic classes and cause widespread strife. “Those who are replaced by robots will become jobless and homeless. Those whose lives are enriched by the benefit of the robots will become abundantly wealthy in the material quality of their lives.”

Source : IOT solutions world congress

Our IOT in building automation, manufacturing can help reduce the time required to monitor the environment, abnormal conditions of heavy engineering equipment. inventory tracking & maintenance management.

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mktg

Co-founder and director at Software Associates. Brings over 25 years of expertise in product management implementing ERP solutions in healthcare and supply chain logistics industries. Heads new initiatives around industrial Internet Of Things, smart sensors and web enablement solutions.