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'Internet of Things' and MFG

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Jan. 15, 2016

CMTA is proud of the technology and innovation that manufacturers are using to compete and grow in California, where every efficiency counts. The “Internet of Things” (IoT) is not new but it's impact on operational efficiencies for manufacturing is emerging. It’s long been understood how IoT can help with distribution and warehouse related processes, but it’s also going to help improve the manufacturing process.

On manufacturing floors there is still a lot of running around, hard copy record keeping and hands-on troubleshooting, especially in small  and mid size operations. IoT can improve all of these manual processes and generate substantial productivity improvements.

By adding IoT sensors, cameras and gauges, as well as the software needed to view the data that’s collected, maintenance teams can keep tabs on equipment performance without ever stepping foot on plant floors. These solutions can alert employees to a component's change in pressure, temperature, vibration, or other critical occurence. Maintenance teams can then remediate the issue with minimal (or no) downtime.

Here’s a look at four main ways Iot will change the future of manufacturing (paraphrased from

1. IoT For The Masses:

Like we saw with cloud infrastructure, IoT technology is bound to soon become ubiquitous and affordable.  Soon small-scale manufacturing operations will be afforded the same customized IoT opportunities as their multinational counterparts.

2. Environmental Compliance

Whether it’s reporting the least energy-efficient components on a line, identifying energy byproducts exceeding tolerable thresholds or delivering real-time information about material waste, IoT sensors and gauges will make compliance much easier for manufacturers everywhere.

3. Improving Output Quality

Connected sensors, cameras and telemetry don’t just report on abnormal machine operation — they also report on product variations and help boost the quality of finished products. With this information, machines further down the production line can be adjusted to resolve the issue and prevent the defective product from reaching consumers.

Better inline quality assurance will relieve stress from quality control departments, instill better confidence within the sales and distribution chain, and ultimately improve relations with end consumers as well.

4. Increased Business Intelligence

It’s one thing to get your machines connected and collecting data, but understanding that data is something else entirely. Executives who have invested in customized intelligence software are also learning how to make meaningful productivity decisions based on their data, finding faster and cheaper methods to produce superior products. You can expect to see rapid growth in software and mobile products aimed at delivering actionable data to upper management. By speaking the user’s language and making IoT relatable, these software advancements will only further accelerate adoption across the whole industry.

IoT technology is set to revolutionize how manufacturers operate to an extent that hasn’t been seen since the first mechanized assembly lines were introduced. 

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