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AXILE Machine Blog

Agile Smart Machining

【AXILE insight】The impact of digitalization on performance and strategies

December 2021
Author: linchiang
Company: Buffalo Machinery Co., Ltd.
【AXILE insight】The impact of digitalization on performance and strategies

Factory Digitalization and machine tools environment
Key drivers in machine tool manufacturing are increasing speed and quality.
As with other industries, machine tool manufacturers are realizing digitalization has an increasing role in achieving those goals. Digitalization is not just for big, cash-rich companies and obviously not limited to high-tech industries. Digitalization helps bridging virtual and real worlds to create business value quickly and should be embraced by all range of companies, all kind of industries.

More importantly, companies are beginning to see that if they don’t get started, they will be digitally disrupted. Betting on the status quo is sort of a dangerous proposition. Organizations don’t want to be left behind. It does not really matter where you start the journey, you have to start.

Digitalization and automated production bring together a huge volume of data generated in a process of continuous cycle between the real and digital worlds. This enables employees in manufacturing companies to make appropriate decisions based on data and respond more quickly to trends and changes. Thanks to networking and data-sharing between the machines, factory managers expect to be able to improve manufacturing times, planning for downtimes and service inputs, as well as considering a real-time monitoring of Energy management.

The future of manufacturing depends on intelligent automation. To gain an edge on the competition in the race to upgrade production, embracing smart manufacturing is the best way to stay ahead of the curve. The digital strategy of a company needs to become the essence of its corporate strategy. Coupling the digital infrastructure with the corporate strategy gives the ability to rapidly adapt to the dynamic requirements of each market.

Human being interactions within a digitalized factory
A strong sense of a collective purpose is vital today as we navigate COVID-19, a pandemic which is also forcing a startlingly fast transformation of the manufacturing industry.

COVID-19 is our modern war, and it’s accelerating the merger of our physical and digital worlds, integrating human systems with a basket of 5G and related technologies like cloud-integrated networks, Iot, AI systems, robotics, and sensing. 

Let’s take as an example the way to move heavy equipment on a factory floor. The new generation Automated guided vehicles (AGV) or forklifts now do the work, allowing for precision control. Nowadays, forklifts can move the same equipment or payload three times faster than traditional human operation. And in a dynamic, collaborative environment, the automated forklift can utilize sensor data to adjust its speed up or down – depending on whether there are humans interacting in the same space.

Human interaction and human collaboration are so important to drive towards changes. This should always be an inspiration to try and learn from different perspectives.

These days, more and more workers are trained on software simulation, augmented systems and augmented machinery. Humans are definitely not taken out of the equation. Digitalization is augmenting human capability to interact with machines and systems and that's a big change in terms of our productivity level.

Digitalization is also helping to attract younger people to the manufacturing industry, which is faced with a retiring workforce like other industries. It’s making machine tools catchy again and that is an opportunity which should be considered by the manufacturing industry in order to attract a new generation of engineers born with Industry 4.0 technologies as a key driver.

AXILE Delivers Digitalized Intelligent machines and Automation systems 

AXILE ART, the intelligent monitoring system is using high-end "sensor" application technology to monitor the status of the whole machine and automation system in real time, using its "Internet of Things IoT" characteristics and "artificial intelligence AI" calculations to comprehensively monitor the wearing components of the whole system and improve machine reliability, productivity as well as equipment lifetime.

It can also be connected with an ERP or IT systems to achieve a real-time supply of information for predictive maintenance, to avoid unexpected downtime, to perform 24/7 intelligent automated production, and to increase production capacity.

AXILE automation systems are defined from small size pallet systems up to extra large solutions for our range of 5 axis machining center. These pallet solutions allows hours of unmanned production and consist in an exchange of raw and finished workpieces between the machine and a separate holding area. AXILE can accommodate the right storage level with an optimized floorspace occupancy to deliver efficiency and productivity to all sizes of manufacturing company.

Aside from providing machinists the peace of mind to embrace 24/7 automation, smart machines and automation systems can last longer, produce better-quality parts and components, lower the overall cost of ownership, and process workpieces faster. All this contributes to significantly improved ROI.

Today, any company, whatever its size and its industry, willing to remain competitive must integrate a digital strategy. It has to combine information, technology and physical resources to enhance collaborators’ abilities and company performance. In brief, a digitalization is not a choice, it is definitely a requirement.

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