MiMfg Sep/Oct 2022 | Page 14

14 MiMfg Magazine September / October 2022
For example , industry-leading companies like Bosch have developed software engineering internship programs based on the extreme need for people who can program and operate the machines . Taking advantage of Industry 4.0 concepts means manufacturers can create efficiencies and improve operating output all while upskilling their workers to prepare for the future .
Improving Quality and Versatility
Data analysis can also have a significant impact on your existing workforce and logistics . Providing the right solution for any particular challenge and / or desired outcome can take many twists and turns from improving Overall Equipment Effectiveness ( OEE ) and Overall Labor Effectiveness ( OLE ) to implementing more efficient systems for moving parts and materials around the shop floor .
According to Simmons , the inventory of solutions available when it comes to Industry 4.0 technologies is limitless .
“ The list just goes on and on and on ,” he says . “ The capacity is out there to cover all aspects of digital transformation .”
Manufacturers place a premium on machines that are flexible , and that has only been amplified in the wake of continued supply chain disruptions .
For Mark Hendel , Global Sales Director at the Lansing-based IMPCO Microfinishing Systems , it ’ s all about being agile .
“ The biggest keyword we ’ re hearing from manufacturers is ‘ flexibility ,’” says Hendel . “ Manufacturers
Nobody ’ s out there to get rid of people , [ Industry 4.0 ] is an opportunity to allow people to do something of a bigger value or to learn a new skill .
— Troy Mohrland • Hyperion Automation
want more flexible product on their shop floor . They don ’ t want to be locked in with a machine that ’ ll only do one part type . They want a machine that ’ s going to do two or three part types today with the possibility of doing more in the future .”
IMPCO has been producing microfinishing machines that improve the roundness and quality of metal parts like crankshafts since 1937 . The company has a legacy of being an industry leader in traditional engine crankshaft finishing , however they have also evolved with the marketplace and with the dynamic needs of their customers .
IMPCO ’ s continued technological evolution has focused on making better , more flexible equipment . Processes and production may have to change constantly based on the availability and quality of the raw materials , and companies like IMPCO — which make and implement vital production equipment — have to be prepared for that .
“ We do the initial design with a high level of flexibility within the process ,” says Hendel .
Industry 4.0 concepts can be a problem-solver for internal processes that are producing under-
Robots , like this one and the one on the cover from Holland-based Hyperion Automation , can help automate manufacturing processes but also improve working conditions for humans .