It is difficult to conceive a production line today without industrial automation in today’s factories and shops. Work that was formerly done by hand is now automated with the help of technologies like computer software and robots. As a result of these systems, operators no longer have to be as hands-on and involved as they formerly were. Feedback loops and sensory programmes are common components of automation systems, and they automatically modify operational conditions depending on real-time data to match desired values. Digitalization of manufacturing, particularly the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), has enhanced industrial automation technology dramatically in recent years, providing firms with an increasing number of chances to benefit from automation solutions.
Currently, Factory automation products Malaysia is being used in a wide range of industries, from manufacturing to operating an ATM, utilising automated systems. There is a wide range of complexity and human involvement in automated systems. Industrial automation solutions come in a variety of forms, but the vast majority fall into one of three categories: fixed, programmable, or adaptable.
Rigid or hard automation is another name for this form of fixed automation. Because of this, it’s typically used to automate repetitive processes with dedicated equipment to increase production efficiency and throughput rates, as the name implies. Changing the process or equipment configuration after a fixed automation system is installed is difficult. Stable manufacturing with high volume throughputs and consistency necessitates fixed automation systems. Assembly lines in the auto industry are examples of fixed automation.
This form of automation is ideal for manufacturing batches of products when the automated system’s instructions alter according to the product being created at the moment. Depending on the specifications and processing activities required, the control programme can be reconfigured for each batch. This procedure of switching from one batch to the next takes time because the equipment must typically be modified as well. While programmable automation is most commonly used for medium-sized orders, it can also be utilised for orders of any size if the economics are justified. Programmable automation can be seen in industrial robots.
Soft automation is a term used to describe this technology since it is flexible. Programmable automation is similar in that it allows for quick product changes. Product changeovers are communicated via the control system and occur rapidly and automatically with flexible automation, reducing the time needed to reconfigure the equipment between batches. Flexible automation is exemplified by CNC machines.
Improved quality: automated work cells are often less variable and less prone to error as compared to human operators. The accuracy is given by industrial automation results in improved uniformity and reproducibility in the manufacturing process – ultimately providing higher quality products.
Higher efficiency and throughput: robots can function 24 hours a day and 7 days a week – and simply work quicker than human operators. This added work time boosts efficiency and results in higher throughput from the work cell. Additionally, industrial automation allows flexibility to change the work cell. For example, if the work cell has to be adjusted or alterations made for a new product, the automated system can be reprogrammed offline, oftentimes with little to no downtime, and minimum to no operator training required.