December 10, 2019 Last updated January 10th, 2020 31 Reads share

Modern Technologies Impacting the Manufacturing Business

Image Credit: DepositPhotos

The most competitive manufacturing companies out there in the world are continuously investing in new technologies to improve the quality of their products as well as the rate that they manufacture them. Human error and the limited working hours of a company’s workforce can limit the company’s production rate and allow for compromises on the items’ quality.

Among the modern technologies that manufacturing businesses are using include VR and AR technologies, additive manufacturing, AI, and others.

Wearable Technology

The gadgets that people usually use are handheld items that keep people from using both of their hands when using them. Right now, companies can let their employees use wearable technologies or smart accessories in their work to improve efficiency and productivity in the production line.

Employees can receive essential work-related information and give remote orders to other people involved in the operations of the factory. Factories are also accident-prone areas where people could lose track of one another because of reduced worker visibility, and certain wearables can keep accidents from occurring.

Supervisors can track their employees’ movements to compensate for reduced visibility and contact them whenever needed. The workers can also check on the status of their products by checking on the item’s electrical component to ensure that they were correctly manufactured.

Companies can also equip their workforces with virtual reality and augmented reality capabilities through the use of the right smart accessories.

Virtual and Augmented Reality

VR or Virtual Reality and AR or Augmented Reality are currently revolutionizing the manufacturing industry by improving the collaboration between man and machine and streamlining the planning and production processes.

Many engineers and designers use virtual reality technology to create realistic models of product designs to allow them to see their plans digitally and check for any problems before production starts. Product developers can also benefit from VR by enabling them to modify the products even before they are manufactured.

Through the continuous use of VR technologies, manufacturers can also test out their products during the development process and decrease the time involved in modifying designs. Automobile manufacturers can take advantage of virtual reality to minimize both the time and cost when changing the product’s designs, tolerances, and safety features.

As long as manufacturing companies continue to use VR technologies, they can have better control over all the aspects involved in the manufacturing process, and they can see improvements in their overall productivity.

AR or augmented reality is another technology that manufacturers can take advantage of as it allows the worker in the production line to efficiently review the products’ status as essential information regarding the item is displayed on the worker’s field of vision. Employees using electronic goggles will see the info overlaid onto the items that they’re looking at.

Workers can use the overlain information to make the necessary adjustments on the item and ensure that they’ll only produce high-quality products on the line.

Both VR and AR technologies can also be employed to train employees on how to use the machines inside the factory by immersing the worker in the working environment and feeding the worker vital information regarding the items they’re handling. Virtual reality has seen more use in training purposes compared to augmented reality.

Additive Manufacturing

Many manufacturing companies are adopting 3D printing or additive manufacturing in their factories to limit human error and increase the production rate. Additive manufacturing is different from the conventional approach of subtractive manufacturing since 3D printing allows a company to fabricate items by printing the material layer by layer to produce an item.

3D printers can make parts from CAD models just like subtractive manufacturing, allowing companies to achieve a smooth technological transition from one method of manufacturing to another. 3D printers can also produce parts more quickly than a human workforce without compromising on quality.

If a company decides to move to use a smart factory compared to a traditional one, then they can take full advantage of additive manufacturing since 3D printers can be automated to allow for the continuous production of parts and items.

Artificial Intelligence

Many people have already invested in artificial intelligence since it has produced quite a buzz with its many potential applications in the industry and the controversies surrounding it with how many workers will be affected and become unemployed.  AI will come in handy for manufacturing companies since some of them are already suffering from workforce shortages.

AI is necessary for automated machines to function 24/7 while also achieving predictive maintenance to keep the devices from failing at a critical time. Automated machines like 3D printers, laser cutting machines, automatic bending machines, and others can work non-stop thanks to artificial intelligence.

Smart Machines

Smart machines have a significant connection with artificial intelligence since such machines have deep learning capabilities that allow them to solve problems, make decisions, and coordinate actions while being free from any human errors that limit productivity. Automated solutions can only be used to their full potential through artificial intelligence, and manufacturing businesses can even slowly move to have true smart factories through the use of smart machines being one essential step for it.

Manufacturing companies can use fully-automated robots, laser cutters, and other solutions to limit human involvement while increasing their production rates.

Conclusion

Modern technologies have been making positive impacts in the manufacturing industry ever since companies decided to use them to improve their performances. Technology will further be developed as more and more companies choose to use newer technologies for their factories.

As manufacturing businesses continue to use and purchase modern technologies, the industry will likely see further improvements in the field and more competitive companies rising and providing consumers with excellent quality goods.

 

business team augmented -DepositPhotos

Sean Felix Lim

Sean Felix Lim

Sean Felix Lim is an author for ten years now and has contributed a lot of his works with industry analysis research for different modern technologies manufacturing companies. He is also a professor and currently teaching Economics.

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