Plant & Works Engineering
Optimise manufacturing production
Published:  11 December, 2015

Industrial IoT is driving the need for integrated solutions throughout The Connected Enterprise. PWE reports. As manufacturing companies aspire to drive tangible value from the industrial Internet of Things (IoT), they look to streamline and integrate processes as one of the most efficient steps to achieve an IoT-ready production and supply network.

Rockwell Automation and FANUC are collaborating on several new initiatives to help customers realise unprecedented productivity gains. PWE reports.

Secure remote monitoring

At the Automation Fair event from Rockwell Automation, FANUC America, producer of CNCs, robots and ROBOMACHINES, and Rockwell Automation, demonstrated the latest technologies for secure remote monitoring and safety aggregation to reduce downtime and boost plant-floor productivity.

“Industrial IoT technologies are delivering on the promise of enabling operators to have access to the timely, contextualised information they need in order to prevent downtime”, said Sujeet Chand, senior vice president and chief technology officer, Rockwell Automation. “Working with FANUC, we can help customers gain access to the data that previously was either unavailable or trapped in their operations. This data is drawn from smart industrial assets, and then contextualised and delivered with actionable information related to asset health, performance and energy usage.”

Major strides

Major strides have been made in monitoring and managing remote assets to further extend The Connected Enterprise. This knowledge, combined with a secure network infrastructure provided by Rockwell Automation and Cisco, can help customers achieve their productivity and optimisation goals.

Rick Schneider, president and CEO, FANUC America, explained: “Companies are continuously searching out the latest manufacturing technologies that will help them drive future growth, innovation and profitability.” He added: “In the future, products such as Zero Downtime (ZDT), a cloud-based application, could virtually eliminate unexpected production downtime.”

The two companies demonstrated enhanced integrated capabilities at the Automation Fair event including the following:

• ZDT from FANUC demonstrated how cloud-based data analysis can predict and prevent unexpected downtime from automation equipment in a connected infrastructure built upon Cisco and Rockwell Automation products.

• Live production data from FANUC robots and ROBOMACHINES, and an Allen-Bradley GuardLogix programmable automation controller (PAC) were displayed on local HMIs powered by FactoryTalk View from Rockwell Automation.

• The CR-35iA Collaborative green robot and fenceless safety used Allen-Bradley Guardmaster scanners.

• A powertrain demo showcasing integrated Rockwell Automation PACs with FANUC CNC and robots highlighted the safety signature aggregation capability, which enables EtherNet/IP to collect safety signatures from controllers and send alerts when a specific asset requires attention.

These developments build on the initial collaboration between FANUC and Rockwell Automation, starting four years ago, in the CNC and Logix PAC environments.

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