Industry 4.0 and “Smart Factory” - a new era of industrial operation
Industry 4.0 is not yet a reality, but a future industry trend which one needs to be prepared for. The basis has been laid out by an expert group in Germany and published as a research paper “Recommendations for implementing the strategic initiative INDUSTRIE 4.0” in April 2013 (sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research). It discerns four industrial revolutions:
- Mechanization - using water and steam power and enabling increase in production efficiency - 18th century
- Electrification - using electrical power and enabling mass production - 19th century
- Informatization - using electronics and IT and enabling automation - 1970’s
- ”Smartification” - using Cyber Physical Systems (CPS) and enabling highly flexible production by maintaining high efficiency - starting now
The “Smart Factory” as visualized by Industry 4.0 is amongst others characterized by a range of possible usages, insecure planning base data, “intelligent” products and processes and flexible automation. The factory structure regarding production and logistics needs therefore to be versatile (“wandlungsfähig”). In particular, the Smart Factory requires “Smart Logistics” - the “Logistics 4.0”..
What does this mean for you?
- What potentials do you have for Logistics 4.0?
- How can you make use of them?
Find out through an Logistics 4.0 Capability Analysis. More...