WFSGI Forum on Necessity to Implement Internet in Manufacturing
TAICHUNG, Taiwan – Industry 4.0 is all about future production technology although, “nobody really knows in which direction it will go for specific industries”, was one of the conclusions of the two day conference on manufacturing last Tuesday and Wednesday.
Some 200 sporting goods industry insiders participated this week for the WFSGI Manufacturers Forum. Theme of the fourth edition of this event was High-Tech Innovation, Digitalization and Robotics.
“The logic of manufacturing has changed completely,” said Professor Dr. Steve Evans of the University of Cambridge. “Only increasing the size of factories no longer means an improvement of efficiency. The introduction of ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) creates a whole new spectrum of opportunities and challenges to we will see manufacturing in the future.”
Supply chain efficiency
A leading issue in the discussion on Industry 4.0 is the importance of ‘cyber physical system’ where the flow of resources and production is simulated by computer software. This gives manufacturers the opportunity to increase their supply chain efficiency and to create new business models as “computer simulation gives you the opportunity to identify hidden patterns and unknown correlations,” said keynote speaker Professor Jay Lee of the University of Cincinnati. “The best results can be achieved when you create a digital twin of your production facility.”
Not surprisingly the WFSGI Forum took place in Taiwan, as Industry 4.0 is a hot theme for the national government in Taiwan. As a manufacturing nation who lost a substantial part of its production capacity to nearby lost-cost countries in the past decade, they see this as an opportunity to modernize its manufacturing industry.
More on the 2016 WFSGI Manufacturers Forum in the December issue of Bike Europe.