The Industry 4.0 Evolution

Recently, I came across a white paper from the ARC Advisory Group.  The research for the white paper was partly sponsored by Mitsubishi Electric Corporation.  It focuses on Industry 4.0 and the Industrial Internet of Things.  While the push to quickly integrate these new technologies has been going on for some time it seems clear that most manufacturers will evolve gradually.

As factory automation machines are repaired or improved, they are fitted with newer technology that offers backward compatibility to the original design.  For new turnkey operations, the latest in factory automation is integrated to ensure the best performance output.

Within the white paper, a real-world situation of a wastewater treatment plant is highlighted.  Existing pump and motor technologies were fitted with sensors to detect abnormal operations.  This allowed the municipality to perform scheduled maintenance and prevent an expensive breakdown.  These upgrades in technology were piecemeal but ensured newer technology could monitor older.  Further, the ubiquity of the device communication, CC-Link in this case, ensures against obsolescence.

Municipal Water Treatment Plant of the City of Rotenburg an der Fulda – ARC Advisory Group

There is no single approach to this evolution.  Technologies conform to all budgets and speed to integration can also be considered.  For example, if a manufacturer needs to improve the quality of their product then perhaps a standalone poka-yoke system is a much faster and less expensive addition than an entirely new automation machine.  This is well described in a portion of the white paper on page 5:

“Industrial companies do not have to choose between evolution and revolution: it is possible and realistic to combine continuous improvements such as manufacturing excellence or lean manufacturing with step-change improvements; as business process improvement and radical improvements in manufacturing depend on strategy, goals, and priorities.”

MISUMI provides the best industrial-grade components for your factory automation project.  Whether you need to make an improvement within your existing process or find components for a new machine build, our platform makes it easy to find cables, PLCs, HMIs, and other products for your project.

To download the full white paper by the ARC Advisory Group and Mitsubishi Electric, click here.

Share this Story
Load More Related Articles
Load More By Patrick Teagues
Load More In All Things Electric

One Comment

  1. Stephanie Sharp

    November 11, 2021 at 11:36 am

    Great article and example! We use Misumi materials to enable our 3D printer automation upgrade. There are millions of 3D printers around the world and automation reduces labour 99%, reduces waste, and increases throughput 4 – 10X. To make printers run continuously like this, we need great materials like the extrusion we get from Misumi to stabilize the printer (they were never designed for 24-hour production). In 3D printing, Industry 4.0 is here and it is saving money, solving the supply chain crisis, reducing shipping, and saving the environment. Keep up the good work!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Check Also

Quabbin Industrial Ethernet Torsion Test

Quabbin provided us with another test report that ...

Subscribe to the Mech Lab!

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter @usa_misumi

Subscribe to our Channel