Collaborative and Digital Solutions for the Smart Factory

– Guest posting by Maurizio Cremonini, VP Marketing, and Business Development, Comau SpA

The progressive digitalization of factories is leading to significant changes in how companies of the industrial sector approach manufacturing. By deploying interconnected open automation, collaborative robotics and innovative wearable devices, companies can leverage the power of real-time data transfer and virtual environments to streamline their processes, ensure better quality and improve the flexibility of their production potential.

In this context, a safe, collaborative and synergistic human and machine-driven automation can become a key driver of new industrial production and its workflow.

With the expression HUMANufacturing, Comau has defined its path towards Industry 4.0; people and robots working safely in close proximity, industrial machines being ‘intelligent’, easy to use and, thanks to the use of the most innovative digital technologies, able to work efficiently and autonomously while interacting within a networked production system. In this vision, the worker remains at the core of the whole manufacturing production process and machines, guided by data analytics, are called on to adapt their work to the human’s operating needs.

So, in the context of the new Digital Transformation, it’s very interesting to understand how companies can optimize human support and machine-driven automation. The optimization of manufacturing processes can help companies avoid the risks of over-automating their industrial plants or over-staffing their production operations. Comau has defined this innovative new production paradigm “rightsized automation”, where it’s possible to create a smart, more effective balance between humans and machines’ work by designing a customized workflow based on clients’ needs.

Following this approach, the enabling wearable technologies and Big Data connectivity deserve specific attention. For example, at the automatica 2018, Comau has launched its new robotic exoskeletons, capable of making workers’ work less strenuous and more accurate.

In addition, the use of tools that provide powerful analytics, systems for real-time monitoring and remote diagnostics, and preventive maintenance are very important. Comau introduced some innovative solutions in this field at automatica 2018.

About Comau:
Comau, a member of the FCA Group, is a worldwide leader in delivering advanced industrial automation products and systems. Combining innovative engineering solutions with enabling technologies, Comau helps companies leverage the full potential of digital manufacturing. In addition to a vast range of modular, flexible and highly-configurable products, Comau offers interconnected digital service solutions able to transmit, elaborate and analyze important machine and process data, thereby increasing efficiency for smart manufacturing. The full portfolio includes: joining, assembly and machining solutions for traditional and electric vehicles, robotized manufacturing systems, a complete family of robots with extensive range and payload configurations, autonomous logistics, and asset optimization services with real-time monitoring and control capabilities. The offering also extends to project management and consultancy, IoT services, and maintenance and training for a wide range of industrial segments. Headquartered in Turin, Italy, Comau has over 45 years of factory-proven experience and an international network of 36 locations, 15 manufacturing plants and 5 innovation centers that span 17 countries and employ more than 9,000 people. A global network of distributors and partners allows the company to respond quickly to the needs of customers of all sizes, no matter where they are located throughout the world. Comau is also committed to improving human – machine collaboration by developing competencies through the formation of individuals and groups as part of its open automation approach. This includes hands-on training programs by Comau Academy that develop the technical and managerial competencies necessary to face the challenges and opportunities of Industry 4.0.

Learn more at the lecture ‘Right-size Automation for the Smart Factory: How Real-time Collaborative Solutions Enhance the Man-to-Machine Interface‘ by Maurizio Cremonini, Vice President Marketing and Business Development, Comau SpA, on Tuesday, 19 June, 2018, 12:40 pm, at automatica 2018, hall B4.
Explore IoT for production and manufacturing, e.g. IT solutions in wearable technologies, at the IT2Industry subject area of automatica 2018 – 19 to 22 June, Messe München.
– Get an automatica 2018 ticket.


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