There’s no doubt that automation plays a huge role in the future of manufacturing. In fact, an Oxford report estimates that automation in the manufacturing industry could increase $4.9 trillion every year by 2030. Here are 12 of the top automation manufacturing trends that are redefining manufacturing as we know it today—and paving the way forward for the future.
1. ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING
Manufactures today often use additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing, to custom build parts and products for their customers. This process can require fewer materials and create less waste than traditional manufacturing methods. It can also be used for creating models, prototypes or components of finished products.
See how HP 3D Printing and Fast Radius helped Bastian Solutions with industrial production through 3D printing.
2. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI)
More than half of Europe’s top manufacturers are already implementing at least one AI use case in manufacturing operations, according to 2019 research from the Capgemini Research Institute. Opportunities abound for AI in manufacturing, from intelligent production automation to warehousing and distribution.
3. AUTONOMOUS MOBILE ROBOTS (AMRs)
These mobile robots relieve workers from repetitive and unergonomic tasks. Where workers are not available, they provide the materials transport capabilities required to keep operations running smoothly.
4. COLLABORATIVE ROBOTICS
Collaborative robotic systems help manufacturers achieve greater efficiencies, faster. For example, workers assisting robotic welding find that instead of spending about two weeks to program a robot to weld effectively, a collaborative robot can be programmed in about 20 minutes.
See how FANUC helped Last Arrow Manufacturing implement collaborative robots to take on simple and repetitive welding projects.
5. DARK FACTORIES
Also known as lights-out manufacturing, are fully automated production sites that can run 24/7, 365 days a year with little or no direct human intervention on site. While not widely prevalent today, we may see more in the near future.
6. DEEP-LEARNING-POWERED VISION
Deep learning has found a sweet spot in vision-based applications, particularly inspection, where they outperform both human operators and traditional machine vision systems.
7. ENTERPRISE RESOURCE PLANNING (ERP) TECHNOLOGY
ERP systems help manufacturers automate different areas of their operations under one comprehensive system. This allows them to oversee the entire manufacturing operation and make improvements and adjustments where needed.
8. INDUSTRIAL INTERNET OF THINGS (IIOT)
Used specifically in manufacturing and industrial applications, this system of interconnected devices collects data that can be used to enhance the manufacturing process.
9. MOBILE MANIPULATORS
This robot system combines a robotic manipulator arm with a mobile platform (often an AMR) to increase mobility and flexibility in the types of operations that can be completed.
10. PICK AND PLACE ROBOTS
Picking robots aren’t new to manufacturing—they’re just getting smarter. These robots can grab dissimilar parts in assembly settings, pack boxes in shipping facilities, organize bins, load machining tools, inspect parts and all kinds of other helpful tasks.
11. PREDICTIVE MAINTENANCE
Using sensor data and AI, this maintenance method serves to detect failure patterns in machinery and parts early on so manufacturers can take preventative action and avoid a costly malfunction.
With this cloud-based “robotic rental” solution, you can easily access and operate robots when and where you need them for any period of timecreating more flexibility for your operations and potential cost savings.
Want to know more? Don’t miss Automate, the largest showcase of automation in North America, May 22–25, 2023, in Detroit, Michigan, USA. See many of the game-changing technologies mentioned above on the show floor. Register FREE today.
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