How AI will revolutionize manufacturing
AUTOMATION is an enterprise pipe dream. Not only does it ensure that workflows are more efficient but also tackles operating costs and quality improvement.
Artificial intelligence (AI) has dramatically changed our world by making more accurate decisions faster and subsequently creating greater opportunities for businesses.
Recently, the Wall Street Journal reported that the world’s largest beer maker now uses machine learning to ensure that the brewery keeps going.
Wireless sensors are installed in machine motors to detect ultrasonic sounds that humans would not be able to. This helps predict when machines would fail hours in advance to ensure sufficient time for replacement and to avoid production downtime at the plant.
Now, we explore how AI can improve manufacturing.
# 1 | 24/7 lights-out operation
While the average operating staff would work an 8-hour shift a day and sometimes even double shifts, AI can continuously work for up to 24 hours a day.
If the task does not require human dexterity or mental agility, then it could be automated.
The infamous Japanese factory that builds robots with robots is an example of a fully 24/7 lights-out operation where it does not require any human intervention.
# 2 | No sick leave or annual leave
Sick leave and annual leave can amount to a big sum for employers. When the operating staffs are robots, there’s no worry for these as robots neither get sick nor take off days.
While it is important to note that this would improve productivity, employing robotics in a factory would have its maintenance costs involved. Though, AI would be able to detect potential malfunctions themselves ahead of time, ensuring that productivity remains high.
# 3 | Health and safety improvements
Manufacturing could be hazardous for operating staffs and a recurring problem to employers. However, when tasks are carried out by robots instead of humans, Occupational Health & Safety issues would be removed entirely.
# 4 | Reduced operating costs
If you get greater value for the same cost, why not? With robots carrying out operations without the overtime pay, that is exactly how a complete lights-out operation would mean to a manufacturer’s P&L statement.
# 5 | Improved process quality and consistency
AI has proved to be increasingly important in predictive maintenance as it provides real-time analytics for equipment conditions and performance.
With the precision of robotic algorithms, manufacturers are able to minimize downtime to none and improve process quality as well as consistency to its optimum.