The "Internet of Things" is showing up in more homes everyday, creating networks of connectivity that allow our everyday devices to collect and exchange data. It is helping to create ways to integrate our physical world into computer-based systems, resulting in improved efficiency, accuracy, and even economic benefit. And now, the IoT is beginning to introduce its face in the Industrial Robot business... introducing the IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things).
FANUC is one of the first to design an industrial internet of things for the industrial world, hoping to create the factory of the future. This machine-to-machine network, aimed at automakers, is called FIELD (FANUC Intelligent Edge Link and Drive). FIELD network make it possible to connect almost every piece of equipment in a manufacturing plant.
FANUC hopes that FIELD will change factories across the world by increasing profitability by advancing efficiency of the equipment through the improvement of the reliability, quality, flexibility, and speed of machine processes. Field should also help to improve machine learning and its capabilities.
Factory owners will very easily be able to customize their robots and systems by downloading any necessary applications. This connectivity will enable the delivery of analytics to help optimize manufacturing production and ultimately reach a new level of productivity and efficiency. FANUC reports that FIELD will connect industrial robots, computer numerical control machines, and peripheral devices and sensors. Artificial intelligence and edge-computing technologies are combined to help enable distributed learning to help the coordination and collaboration of data. Human workers can then analyze data through a computer and know instantly which machines need servicing, maintenance of replacement.
Current automotive factories (General Motors) that have already implemented a system or one similar are quickly realizing the decrease in downtime and increased cost savings.
There are bigger plans yet to come. FANUC is working with Cisco, Rockwell Automation, and Preferred Networks to further develop the FIELD system Their goal is to create a full solution that includes network and computer infrastructure, applications, while also enabling middle-ware platform. IoT solutions currently in place are still basic, but manufacturers plan to implement more complex technologies such as autonomous robots and augmented reality (AR) tools. It is also important to note some challenges with the IoT that are still being addressed. These include threats of cyber attacks, unknown ROI, technical difficulty integrated IoT, and reluctance as it could present job losses. An estimated investment of over 70 billion in IoT solutions will exceed 70 billion by 2020 to solve these challenges.
RobotWorx are proud integrators of FANUC systems and are ready to help you integrate automation. Contact RobotWorx online or give us a call to talk to our experts about how we can help add value to your production line today; 740-251-4312.