Nowadays, Lean Manufacturing and Industry 4.0 are very important in every country. One of the main benefits is continued market presence. It has been identified that there is a need to change existing educational programs, as well as update the knowledge and skills of existing employees. It should be borne in mind that behind each technological improvement, there is a human being. Human talent cannot be neglected. The main objectives of this article are to review the link between Lean Manufacturing, the incorporation of Industry 4.0 and the steps to follow to implement it; analyze the current situation and study the implications and benefits of this new trend, with a particular focus on Mexico. Lean Manufacturing and Industry 4.0 implementation waves must always take care of the most important capital – intellectual capital. The methodology used in this article comprised the following steps: reviewing the reality of the fourth industrial revolution, reviewing employees’ skills on the journey to become world-class, and analyzing the situation in Mexico. Lean Manufacturing and Industry 4.0 were studied not as exclusive concepts, but as complementary ones. The methodological framework used is focused on motivating companies’ collaborators to guarantee common results, innovate, and remain in the market in the face of new requirements from company stakeholders. The key findings were that both trends emphasize the need to improve communication across the entire company and incorporate new technologies into everyday work, from the shop floor to administrative staff, to help improve processes. Taking care of people, activities and processes will bring a company success. In the specific case of Mexico, companies in all sectors need to be aware of and implement technological improvements according to their specific needs. Low-cost labor represents one of the most typical barriers. In conclusion, companies must build a roadmap according to their strategy and needs to achieve their short, medium- and long-term goals.
Although Europe is on the threshold of a new industrial revolution called Industry 4.0, many believe that this will increase the flexibility of production, the mass adaptation of products to consumers and the speed of their service; it will also improve product quality and dramatically increase productivity. However, as expected, all the benefits of Industry 4.0 face many of the inevitable changes and challenges they pose. One of them is the inevitable transformation of current competition and business models. This article examines the possible results of competitive conversion from the classic Bertrand and Cournot models to qualitatively new competition based on innovation. Ability to deliver a new product quickly and the possibility to produce the individual design (through flexible and quickly configurable factories) by reducing equipment failures and increasing process automation and control is highly important. This study shows that the ongoing transformation of the competition model is changing the game. This, together with the creation of complex value networks, means huge investments that make it particularly difficult for small and medium-sized enterprises. In addition, the ongoing digitalization of data raises new concerns regarding legal obligations, intellectual property, and security.
The manufacturing industry is currently undergoing a digital transformation as part of the mega-trend Industry 4.0. As part of this phase of the industrial revolution, traditional manufacturing processes are being combined with digital technologies to achieve smarter and more efficient production. To successfully digitally transform a manufacturing facility, the processes must first be digitized. This is the conversion of information from an analogue format to a digital format. The objective of this study was to explore the research area of digitizing manufacturing data as part of the worldwide paradigm, Industry 4.0. The formal methodology of a systematic mapping study was utilized to capture a representative sample of the research area and assess its current state. Specific research questions were defined to assess the key benefits and limitations associated with the digitization of manufacturing data. Research papers were classified according to the type of research and type of contribution to the research area. Upon analyzing 54 papers identified in this area, it was noted that 23 of the papers originated in Germany. This is an unsurprising finding as Industry 4.0 is originally a German strategy with supporting strong policy instruments being utilized in Germany to support its implementation. It was also found that the Fraunhofer Institute for Mechatronic Systems Design, in collaboration with the University of Paderborn in Germany, was the most frequent contributing Institution of the research papers with three papers published. The literature suggested future research directions and highlighted one specific gap in the area. There exists an unresolved gap between the data science experts and the manufacturing process experts in the industry. The data analytics expertise is not useful unless the manufacturing process information is utilized. A legitimate understanding of the data is crucial to perform accurate analytics and gain true, valuable insights into the manufacturing process. There lies a gap between the manufacturing operations and the information technology/data analytics departments within enterprises, which was borne out by the results of many of the case studies reviewed as part of this work. To test the concept of this gap existing, the researcher initiated an industrial case study in which they embedded themselves between the subject matter expert of the manufacturing process and the data scientist. Of the papers resulting from the systematic mapping study, 12 of the papers contributed a framework, another 12 of the papers were based on a case study, and 11 of the papers focused on theory. However, there were only three papers that contributed a methodology. This provides further evidence for the need for an industry-focused methodology for digitizing and analyzing manufacturing data, which will be developed in future research.
Problem-based learning (PBL) is a student-centered pedagogy that originated in the medical field and has also been used extensively in other knowledge disciplines with recognized advantages and limitations. PBL has been used in various undergraduate engineering programs with mixed outcomes. The current fourth industrial revolution (digital era or Industry 4.0) has made it essential for many science and engineering students to receive effective training in advanced courses such as industrial automation and robotics. This paper presents a case study at Assumption University of Thailand, where a PBL-like approach was used to teach some aspects of automation and robotics to selected groups of undergraduate engineering students. These students were given some basic level training in automation prior to participating in a subsequent training session in order to solve technical problems with increased complexity. The participating students’ evaluation of the training sessions in terms of learning effectiveness, skills enhancement, and incremental knowledge following the problem-solving session was captured through a follow-up survey consisting of 14 questions and a 5-point scoring system. From the most recent training event, an overall 70% of the respondents indicated that their skill levels were enhanced to a much greater level than they had had before the training, whereas 60.4% of the respondents from the same event indicated that their incremental knowledge following the session was much greater than what they had prior to the training. The instructor-facilitator involved in the training events suggested that this method of learning was more suitable for senior/advanced level students than those at the freshmen level as certain skills to effectively participate in such problem-solving sessions are acquired over a period of time, and not instantly.
Surface Mount Technology (SMT) is widely used in the area of the electronic assembly in which the electronic components are mounted to the surface of the printed circuit board (PCB). Most of the defects in the SMT process are mainly related to the quality of solder paste printing. These defects lead to considerable manufacturing costs in the electronics assembly industry. Therefore, the solder paste inspection (SPI) machine for controlling and monitoring the amount of solder paste printing has become an important part of the production process. So far, the setting of the SPI threshold is based on statistical analysis and experts’ experiences to determine the appropriate threshold settings. Because the production data are not normal distribution and there are various variations in the production processes, defects related to solder paste printing still occur. In order to solve this problem, this paper proposes an online machine learning algorithm, called the automatic threshold adjustment (ATA) algorithm, and closed-loop architecture in the SMT process to determine the best threshold settings. Simulation experiments prove that our proposed threshold settings improve the accuracy from 99.85% to 100%.
Industry 4.0 is the fourth industrial revolution that focuses on interconnectivity of machine to machine, human to machine and human to human via Internet of Things (IoT). Technologies of industry 4.0 facilitate communication between human and machine through IoT and forms Cyber-Physical Production System (CPPS). In CPPS, multiple shop floors sensor data are connected through IoT and displayed through sensor dashboard to the operator. These sensor dashboards have enormous amount of information to be presented which becomes complex for operators to perform monitoring, controlling and interpretation tasks. Designing handheld sensor dashboards for supervision task will become a challenge for the interface designers. This paper reports emerging technologies of industry 4.0, changing context of increasing information complexity in consecutive industrial revolutions and upcoming design challenges for interface designers in context of Industry 4.0. Authors conclude that information complexity of sensor dashboards design has increased with consecutive industrial revolutions and designs of sensor dashboard causes cognitive load on users. Designing such complex dashboards interfaces in Industry 4.0 context will become main challenges for the interface designers.
Any industrial company needs to determine the amount of variation that exists within its measurement process and guarantee the reliability of their data, studying the performance of their measurement system, in terms of linearity, bias, repeatability and reproducibility and stability. This issue is critical for automotive industry suppliers, who are required to be certified by the 16949:2016 standard (replaces the ISO/TS 16949) of International Automotive Task Force, defining the requirements of a quality management system for companies in the automotive industry. Measurement System Analysis (MSA) is one of the mandatory tools. Frequently, the measurement system in companies is not connected to the equipment and do not incorporate the methods proposed by the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG). To address these constraints, an R&D project is in progress, whose objective is to develop a web and cloud-based MSA tool. This MSA tool incorporates Industry 4.0 concepts, such as, Internet of Things (IoT) protocols to assure the connection with the measuring equipment, cloud computing, artificial intelligence, statistical tools, and advanced mathematical algorithms. This paper presents the preliminary findings of the project. The web and cloud-based MSA tool is innovative because it implements all statistical tests proposed in the MSA-4 reference manual from AIAG as well as other emerging methods and techniques. As it is integrated with the measuring devices, it reduces the manual input of data and therefore the errors. The tool ensures traceability of all performed tests and can be used in quality laboratories and in the production lines. Besides, it monitors MSAs over time, allowing both the analysis of deviations from the variation of the measurements performed and the management of measurement equipment and calibrations. To develop the MSA tool a ten-step approach was implemented. Firstly, it was performed a benchmarking analysis of the current competitors and commercial solutions linked to MSA, concerning Industry 4.0 paradigm. Next, an analysis of the size of the target market for the MSA tool was done. Afterwards, data flow and traceability requirements were analysed in order to implement an IoT data network that interconnects with the equipment, preferably via wireless. The MSA web solution was designed under UI/UX principles and an API in python language was developed to perform the algorithms and the statistical analysis. Continuous validation of the tool by companies is being performed to assure real time management of the ‘big data’. The main results of this R&D project are: MSA Tool, web and cloud-based; Python API; New Algorithms to the market; and Style Guide of UI/UX of the tool. The MSA tool proposed adds value to the state of the art as it ensures an effective response to the new challenges of measurement systems, which are increasingly critical in production processes. Although the automotive industry has triggered the development of this innovative MSA tool, other industries would also benefit from it. Currently, companies from molds and plastics, chemical and food industry are already validating it.
Agri-food value chain involves various stakeholders with different roles. All of them abide by national and international rules and leverage marketing strategies to advance their products. Food products and related processing phases carry with it a big mole of data that are often not used to inform final customer. Some data, if fittingly identified and used, can enhance the single company, and/or the all supply chain creates a math between marketing techniques and voluntary traceability strategies. Moreover, as of late, the world has seen buying-models’ modification: customer is careful on wellbeing and food quality. Food citizenship and food democracy was born, leveraging on transparency, sustainability and food information needs. Internet of Things (IoT) and Analytics, some of the innovative technologies of Industry 4.0, have a significant impact on market and will act as a main thrust towards a genuine ‘4.0 change’ for agriculture. But, realizing a traceability system is not simple because of the complexity of agri-food supply chain, a lot of actors involved, different business models, environmental variations impacting products and/or processes, and extraordinary climate changes. In order to give support to the company involved in a traceability path, starting from business model analysis and related business process a Framework to Manage Product Data in Agri-Food Supply Chain for Voluntary Traceability was conceived. Studying each process task and leveraging on modeling techniques lead to individuate information held by different actors during agri-food supply chain. IoT technologies for data collection and Analytics techniques for data processing supply information useful to increase the efficiency intra-company and competitiveness in the market. The whole information recovered can be shown through IT solutions and mobile application to made accessible to the company, the entire supply chain and the consumer with the view to guaranteeing transparency and quality.
The construction industry is a renowned latecomer to the efficiency offered by the adoption of information technology. Whereas, the banking, manufacturing, retailing industries have keyed into the future by using digitization and information technology as a new approach for ensuring competitive gain and efficiency. The construction industry has yet to fully realize similar benefits because the adoption of ICT is still at the infancy stage with a major concentration on the use of software. Thus, this study evaluates the awareness and readiness of construction professionals towards embracing a full digitalization of the construction industry using construction 4.0. The term ‘construction 4.0’ was coined from the industry 4.0 concept which is regarded as the fourth industrial revolution that originated from Germany. A questionnaire was utilized for sourcing data distributed to practicing construction professionals through a convenience sampling method. Using SPSS v24, the hypotheses posed were tested with the Mann Whitney test. The result revealed that there are no differences between the consulting and contracting organizations on the readiness for adopting construction 4.0 concepts in the construction industry. Using factor analysis, the study discovers that adopting construction 4.0 will improve the performance of the construction industry regarding cost and time savings and also create sustainable buildings. In conclusion, the study determined that construction professionals have a low awareness towards construction 4.0 concepts. The study recommends an increase in awareness of construction 4.0 concepts through seminars, workshops and training, while construction professionals should take hold of the benefits of adopting construction 4.0 concepts. The study contributes to the roadmap for the implementation of construction industry 4.0 concepts in the South African construction industry.
In accordance with the industry 4.0 concept, manufacturing process steps as well as the materials themselves are going to be more and more digitalized within the next years. The “digital twin” representing the simulated and measured dataset of the (semi-finished) product can be used to control and optimize the individual processing steps and help to reduce costs and expenditure of time in product development, manufacturing, and recycling. In the present work, two material characterization methods based on Lamb waves were evaluated and compared. For demonstration purpose, both methods were shown at a standard industrial product - copper ribbons, often used in photovoltaic modules as well as in high-current microelectronic devices. By numerical approximation of the Rayleigh-Lamb dispersion model on measured phase velocities second order elastic constants (Young’s modulus, Poisson’s ratio) were determined. Furthermore, the effective third order elastic constants were evaluated by applying elastic, “non-destructive”, mechanical stress on the samples. In this way, small microstructural variations due to mechanical preconditioning could be detected for the first time. Both methods were compared with respect to precision and inline application capabilities. Microstructure of the samples was systematically varied by mechanical loading and annealing. Changes in the elastic ultrasound transport properties were correlated with results from microstructural analysis and mechanical testing. In summary, monitoring the elastic material properties of plate-like structures using Lamb waves is valuable for inline and non-destructive material characterization and manufacturing process control. Second order elastic constants analysis is robust over wide environmental and sample conditions, whereas the effective third order elastic constants highly increase the sensitivity with respect to small microstructural changes. Both Lamb wave based characterization methods are fitting perfectly into the industry 4.0 concept.
The trend of digitization significantly changes the role of data for enterprises. Data turn from an enabler to an intangible organizational asset that requires management and qualifies as a tradeable good. The idea of a networked economy has gained momentum in the data domain as collaborative approaches for data management emerge. Traditional organizational knowledge consequently needs to be extended by comprehensive knowledge about data. The knowledge about data is vital for organizations to ensure that data quality requirements are met and data can be effectively utilized and sovereignly governed. As this specific knowledge has been paid little attention to so far by academics, the aim of the research presented in this paper is to conceptualize it by proposing a “data knowledge model”. Relevant model entities have been identified based on a design science research (DSR) approach that iteratively integrates insights of various industry case studies and literature research.
Applications of the Hausdorff space and its mappings into tangent spaces are outlined, including their fractal dimensions and self-similarities. The paper details this theory set up and further describes virtualizations and atomization of manufacturing processes. It demonstrates novel concurrency principles that will guide manufacturing processes and resources configurations. Moreover, varying levels of details may be produced by up folding and breaking down of newly introduced generic models. This choice of layered generic models for units and systems aspects along specific aspects allows research work in parallel to other disciplines with the same focus on all levels of detail. More credit and easier access are granted to outside disciplines for enriching manufacturing grounds. Specific mappings and the layers give hints for chances for interdisciplinary outcomes and may highlight more details for interoperability standards, as already worked on the international level. The new rules are described, which require additional properties concerning all involved entities for defining distributed decision cycles, again on the base of self-similarity. All properties are further detailed and assigned to a maturity scale, eventually displaying the smartness maturity of a total shopfloor or a factory. The paper contributes to the intensive ongoing discussion in the field of intelligent distributed manufacturing and promotes solid concepts for implementations of Cyber Physical Systems and the Internet of Things into manufacturing industry, like industry 4.0, as discussed in German-speaking countries.
The German manufacturing industry has to withstand an increasing global competition on product quality and production costs. As labor costs are high, several industries have suffered severely under the relocation of production facilities towards aspiring countries, which have managed to close the productivity and quality gap substantially. Established manufacturing companies have recognized that customers are not willing to pay large price premiums for incremental quality improvements. As a consequence, many companies from the German manufacturing industry adjust their production focusing on customized products and fast time to market. Leveraging the advantages of novel production strategies such as Agile Manufacturing and Mass Customization, manufacturing companies transform into integrated networks, in which companies unite their core competencies. Hereby, virtualization of the process- and supply-chain ensures smooth inter-company operations providing real-time access to relevant product and production information for all participating entities. Boundaries of companies deteriorate, as autonomous systems exchange data, gained by embedded systems throughout the entire value chain. By including Cyber-Physical-Systems, advanced communication between machines is tantamount to their dialogue with humans. The increasing utilization of information and communication technology allows digital engineering of products and production processes alike. Modular simulation and modeling techniques allow decentralized units to flexibly alter products and thereby enable rapid product innovation. The present article describes the developments of Industry 4.0 within the literature and reviews the associated research streams. Hereby, we analyze eight scientific journals with regards to the following research fields: Individualized production, end-to-end engineering in a virtual process chain and production networks. We employ cluster analysis to assign sub-topics into the respective research field. To assess the practical implications, we conducted face-to-face interviews with managers from the industry as well as from the consulting business using a structured interview guideline. The results reveal reasons for the adaption and refusal of Industry 4.0 practices from a managerial point of view. Our findings contribute to the upcoming research stream of Industry 4.0 and support decision-makers to assess their need for transformation towards Industry 4.0 practices.