Technology is progressing and is moving at a much faster pace than ever before. One of the key components of global industrial transformation is definitely the Internet of Things (IoT), and the manufacturing sector leverages this technology in a well systematic manner. IoT and automation have brought forth another leading industrial revolution, particularly knowns as Industry 4.0, along with a variety of use cases and applications that help in various perspectives including industrialization, visibility, customer-centricity, and a decreased time to market. Now, without further ado, let’s dive straight into this and learn what are automation and IoT in a more detailed view and also how automation and IoT help manufacturing firms evolve to meet market demands.
What are Automation and IoT?
Automation is the innovation and application of technologies to create and deliver goods and services with slight human intervention. The implementation of automation technology improves the overall efficiency and reliability of many tasks that were formerly performed by humans. This type of technology is used in different areas such as manufacturing, utilities, transport, information technology, etc.
According to TechTarget, The internet of things, or IoT, is a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines, objects, animals, or people that are provided with unique identifiers and the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction.
How Automation and IoT Help Manufacturing Firms Evolve to Fulfill Market Demands?
When we take a look at the advantages automation and IoT renders to the manufacturing firms, to meet their market demands, there are quite a few.
In a standard reactive quality control process, before the product reaches the market, manufacturers make sure that the product is properly tested by the quality control team, and rectify any flaws or mistakes of the product. IoT and automation help to make this process proactive with video and thermal sensors collecting complete product data through different stages of a product cycle. Moreover, IoT also provides manufacturers a stronger assurance of detecting quality problems at the source.
IoT makes inventory management a seamless process with the help of radio frequency identification (RFID). Every RFID tag has a unique identification number comprising a piece of digital information about the item. RFID readers can make use of the tags by scanning them and later on it gets transmitted to the cloud for processing. IoT and automation also provide cross-channel visibility to supply chain managers, optimizing shared costs in the value chain.
More Safety in Operations-
IoT and automation also optimize the safety in operations, such as workers, equipment, and other operations in a manufacturing plant, along with the combination of Big Data analytics. It can also be used to track vehicle mishaps, machinery damage, and other damages that affect normal activities.
IoT has introduced smart meters to the manufacturing sector, utilities, and other industries that help in monitoring the consumption of water, fuels, and electric power. The sensors of IoT also enable organizations to measure their specific use and deployment of practices for more adequate use of resources. IoT also enables manufacturers to comprehensively analyze the results of smart meter monitoring by customizable end-user dashboards deployed by IoT services vendors.
Manufacturers can leverage Industrial IoT and data science for better predictive maintenance and moreover, they can eliminate ineffective maintenance routines by implementing the same process. Manufacturers can monitor the operating environment and perform accurate analytics using the appropriate data in the cloud, with the help of IoT sensors and suitable automation.
IoT helps in the smart packaging of materials. This is executed by using materials with embedded interconnectedness that provides advanced benefits of IoT for manufacturers. One of the key aspects of smart packaging is that it enables consumers to engage with it and also helps in developing data to manage a product more efficiently.
At present, new technological advancements are coming in every day and companies are trying to adopt new innovative technologies to keep up with the new trends and changes the tech world has to offer. As for manufacturing firms, IoT and automation plays a vital role in the upbringing of their operations and will continue to do so in the future.
Feril Mohammed Hazem is an industry expert and a professional writer working at ThinkPalm Technologies. He has a keen interest in AI. He is fascinated by futuristic technology and its ways. Off the screen, he is a movie buff, likes playing basketball and listening to music.