German Industry 4.0 points to smart factories


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German Industry 4.0 points to smart factories

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Industry 4.0 is actually the realization of "smart factories". The first industrial revolution began in the second half of the 18th century...

Industry 4.0 is actually the realization of "smart factories". The first industrial revolution began in the second half of the 18th century, and the mechanization of factories was realized by steam engines; the second industrial revolution began in the second half of the 19th century.using electricity to achieve large-scale mass production; the third industrial revolution began in the 20th century In the second half of the year, manufacturing automation was achieved through electrical and information technology.


Industry 4.0 will further evolve on the basis of the previous three industrial revolutions, and realize new manufacturing methods based on the Cyber ​​Physical System. Cyber-physical system refers to the close connection of the real world through a sensor network and the effective use of advanced computing capabilities in cyberspace in the real world. In the manufacturing process, all data related to design, development, and production will be collected by sensors and Analyze to form an intelligent production system that can operate autonomously.


The dynamically configured production method described in the Industry 4.0 report mainly refers to the fact that the working robots (workstations) can access the relevant information in real time through the network, and according to the information content, switch the production method and change the production materials independently, so as to adjust to the most matching mode. Production operations. The dynamically configured production method can achieve different designs, component composition, product orders, production plans, manufacturing, logistics and distribution for each customer and each product, eliminating wasteful links in the entire chain. Different from the traditional production method, the dynamic configuration production method can change the original design scheme at any time before or during production.


For example, the current automobile production is mainly a production line production method according to a pre-designed process flow. Although there are some mixed-flow production methods, in the production process, it must be carried out on a production line composed of many machinery, so the product design will not be diversified. The MES (manufacturing execution management system) that manages these production lines should have brought more flexibility to the production line, but it is limited by the hardware of the many machines that make up the production line and cannot play more functions, which is extremely limited. At the same time, workers operating on different production lines are distributed in various workshops. They do not master the entire production process, so they can only play a role in a certain fixed job. This makes it difficult to meet customer needs in real time.


In the smart factory depicted in Industry 4.0, the concept of fixed production lines has disappeared, and a modular production method that can be dynamically and organically restructured has been adopted.


For example, the production module can be regarded as an "information physics system", and the automobile being assembled can autonomously shuttle between the production modules and accept the required assembly operations. Among them, if there is a bottleneck in the supply of parts for a certain model, the system can timely schedule the production resources or parts of other models to continue production. In other words, the appropriate production module is automatically selected for each model, and the dynamic assembly operation is performed. In this dynamic configuration production mode, the original comprehensive management function of MES can be brought into play, and the entire production process such as design, assembly, and testing can be dynamically managed, which not only ensures the operating efficiency of production equipment, but also enables diversification of production types. .


In the past, we mostly heard "standardization of products", and German Industry 4.0 will promote "standardization of factories".


One aspect of German industrial influence is "standardization." The international standard IEC61131-3 (PLCopen) of the PLC programming language is mainly from German companies; CAN, Profibus, and EtherCAT, which are popular in the communication field, were all born in Germany.


The Industry 4.0 Working Group believes that implementation of Industry 4.0 requires action in eight key areas. The first area is “standardization and reference architecture”. The standardization work is mainly to develop cooperation mechanisms around various links in the smart factory ecological chain to determine what information can be used for exchange. To this end, Industry 4.0 will develop a set of common standards, make cooperation mechanisms possible, and optimize production processes through a series of standards (such as standards on cost, availability, and resource consumption).


In the past, we mostly heard about “standardization of products”, and German Industry 4.0 will promote “factory standardization”. With the help of standardization of smart factories, the manufacturing production model will be promoted to the international market, and technical innovation and model innovation will be improved by standardization Market-oriented efficiency, and continue to maintain German industry's world leading position.


German Industry 4.0 has received unprecedented attention, but how to learn from Industry 4.0, especially the issue of standardization in Industry 4.0, deserves our in-depth consideration.