Siemens is presenting its digitalization portfolio to the metal-forming and additive manufacturing communities. Led by a team of digitalization experts, Siemens can demonstrate and discuss the many ways small fabrication shops and global manufacturers can begin or continue their drive towards the digital factory.
“Our goal is to maximize the productivity of a machine by highlighting areas of improvement. KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) directing a company’s operations are nothing new, but the way you get there has changed dramatically,” says pre-sales consultant, Steve Fruehe.
The machine builder or end-user sets the goals — and the machine hardware and software, working in tandem, collect and store the data in the cloud or on a local server. The experienced production and quality control personnel, who know the hierarchy of data and understand its use, big or small, can then work with Siemens to create and customize a series of apps to pull data points, extract the most important information and display them on various devices, whether on-site or remote, to give authorized personnel the ability to take corrective actions. This includes establishing predictive maintenance schedules and plotting the performance of a globally installed base of machines or a series of production lines, for further analysis or even future design modifications.
“That seems like a lot,” says Fruehe, “but with Mindsphere and or our Analyze MyPerformace application, the customer has the ability to calculate KPIs such as OEE, machine availability, line performance and, of course, quality as referenced to set standards.” The system can be used to monitor machines, production and even physical assets at a company to better achieve production optimization.
As data points are analyzed, corrective actions can be more efficiently executed, through the combination of edge technology, servo positioning with PLCs, CNC program interfaces plus the drives, motors and mechanical components on the machine or line.
Fruehe continues, “Customers can bring their manufacturing process to us and we can help them select the most appropriate solutions. Clearly, the solution for a global OEM won’t be the same as it is for a local fabrication shop, but the guiding principle is actually the same — namely, how do you want to gather the data, prioritize it, put it into an accessible format, and use it to make things run better.”
By offering a flexible suite of products, software and services, the optimum solution can be derived. Cloud-based application loading speeds are getting faster at a significant pace, approximately 10x in the last nine months. Though cloud-based systems are not for everyone, usually owing to multi-nationals who operate their own cloud and very high-security application environments where IP concern is paramount.
“Our Mindsphere application, Manage MyMachines, is really the flagship of our digitalization portfolio,” says Fruehe, “as it can visualize the status of a single machine in a manufacturing shop or a globally installed base of machines located on factory floors around the world.” Comparisons of machine run vs. idle time can be made by the week, the shift, the entire plant or the production monitored in a similar fashion.
About Siemens Digital Industries
Siemens Digital Industries (DI) is an innovation leader in automation and digitalization. Closely collaborating with partners and customers, DI drives the digital transformation in the process and discrete industries. With its Digital Enterprise portfolio, DI provides companies of all sizes with an end-to-end set of products, solutions and services to integrate and digitalize the entire value chain. Optimized for the specific needs of each industry, DI’s unique portfolio supports customers to achieve greater productivity and flexibility. DI is constantly adding innovations to its portfolio to integrate cutting-edge future technologies. Siemens Digital Industries has its global headquarters in Nuremberg, Germany, and has around 75,000 employees internationally.
About Siemens Corporation
Siemens Corporation is a U.S. subsidiary of Siemens AG, a global powerhouse focusing on the areas of power generation and distribution, intelligent infrastructure for buildings and distributed energy systems, and automation and digitalization in the process and manufacturing industries. Through the separately managed company Siemens Mobility, a leading supplier of smart mobility solutions for rail and road transport, Siemens is shaping the world market for passenger and freight services. Due to its majority stakes in the publicly listed companies Siemens Healthineers AG and Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, Siemens is also a world-leading supplier of medical technology and digital healthcare services as well as environmentally friendly solutions for onshore and offshore wind power generation. For more than 160 years, the company has innovated and invented technologies to support American industry spanning manufacturing, energy, healthcare and infrastructure. In fiscal 2018, Siemens USA reported revenue of $23.7 billion, including $5.0 billion in exports, and employs approximately 50,000 people throughout all 50 states and Puerto Rico.