Do you know what Industry 4.0 is and what it means for the manufacturing industry?
Industry 4.0 is the current trend of automation and data exchange in manufacturing technologies and is commonly referred to as the fourth industrial revolution. It is a high-tech strategy for ‘smart’ manufacturing plants. The idea is that technologies – robotics, cloud computing, the Internet of Things (IoT), data capture and analytics, smartphones and mobile devices, to name a few – connect to become powerful systems that process huge data sets and quickly translate this information into intelligent courses of action.
While these technologies are often considered separately, when combined they integrate the physical and virtual worlds. This change enables a powerful new way of organising global operations.
Industry 4.0 has four design principles:
- Interoperability – Machines, devices, sensors, and people connect and communicate with each other via the Internet of Things (IoT) or the Internet of People (IoP).
- Information transparency – Information systems create a virtual copy of the physical world by enriching digital plant models with sensor data.
- Technical assistance – Assistance systems support humans by comprehensively aggregating and visualising information for decision making and problem solving. And cyber physical systems physically support humans by conducting unpleasant, repetitive, exhausting or unsafe tasks.
- Decentralised decisions – Cyber physical systems make decisions on their own and perform their tasks as autonomously as possible.
For the packaging sector, Industry 4.0 can increase packaging speeds, making the manufacture of more individualised products effective while enabling scalable production.
A good example of Industry 4.0’s design principles is the CoLOS® software from Markem-Imaje, locally distributed by Pyrotec PackMark.
CoLOS® software integrates equipment networks throughout the production line into one central system. By standardising data input, human error is reduced. This saves time, improves production flow, and drastically reduces long-term costs.
CoLOS® offers software options that meet every end-of-line production requirement, including packaging coding, message design, the management of complex labels and codes, and the ability to operate printers, scanners, coders and labellers from one platform.
What’s more, CoLOS® provides real-time data about production processes by linking production plans to individual printers on the line. It also monitors the productivity and efficiency of each machine, and automates the selection of data for printing, reducing the need for human intervention. In turn, this reduces the risk of operator errors and provides accurate performance reports.
To establish your smart manufacturing plant, contact Pyrotec PackMark today.