A dystopian backdrop where machines replace humans in factories were the first type of Artificial Intelligence that humans had imagined. In this time of innovation in Automation, AI has in fact eased up industrial pain-points. It has only changed the way humans co-exist with machines. AI’s contribution to the share of profit of factories will increase to 36 percent by 2035.
The Fourth Industrial Revolution will be a knowledge-based one that involves creative collaborations of machines and humans. AiThority tells you how industrial automation will help in the endeavor for a stronger digital economy.
AI in Designing
The disruptive advancement in generative design is making designing for industries an easy process. For instance, Airbus, in collaboration with partners like Autodesk designed a partition in commercial aircraft that separates the passenger compartment from the galley of the plane. The team used different biological model including algorithms made a design which was inspired by the microscale structure of mammal bones. The result was a lightweight, strong partition. Internet of Things, Advanced Robotics and Mixed Reality transform the industry. It will realign the way the products are designed, manufactured and assembled. Simulations using AI can detect the weaknesses in a design well before a model goes into production. This could be applied in designing anything from furniture to jet engines.
AI in Predictive Maintenance
The condition of equipment in factories can be analyzed well ahead of a breakdown with AI. Sensors that work in tandem like with an algorithm can interpret the data. Sonars data, oil temperature, and texture are some other sources of data that can be analyzed for predictive maintenance. Cloud Computing solutions like Microsoft Azure can drive the advancements in predictive maintenance. Even the wear and tear of parts such as bearing, gearbox, etc. can be predicted using Big Data. The advantage of predictive maintenance lies in cutting the downtime in the factory.
AI Does Quality Checks Better Than Humans
Fujitsu, which makes computing products reduced its development time by 80% using AI and (fault) recognition rates stood at 97% in 2017. Machine vision Spots the defects not visible to human eyes. The Cloud-based data processing frameworks can relay the issues to the appropriate authorities. For products like electrical and electronics, the machine vision can help to cut down wastage and failure rates. The wastage caused during the production of chips is 30 percent. This burns a hole on enterprises in Asia-Pacific who leads the sector. Various studies say that the defect detection rate can be increased by up to 90 percent using AI.
Supply Chain Communication Made Easy
The AI in the form of chatbots can speak to stakeholders including suppliers and procurement managers to ensure hassle-free supply of goods. The back end management systems can place procurement request after monitoring the raw material required for the day or month. Cloud-based Machine Learning like Azure’s Cognitive Services equips factories to integrate various departments.
AI in Consumer Retention and After-Sales
Addressing grievances are of vast importance, in customer retention. Software such as MonkeyLearn have text processing functionality by which they identify an aggrieved person’s email or message. The support team can be notified about this. The details of the customer will be auto-logged into their ‘to-do list’. This will prevent the cancellation of orders and helps in customer retention. The AI-enabled CRM solutions can alert the customer on offerings in after-sales support. Auto-generated emails and SMS keep them in the loop.
What AI Offers for Industries?
Reduced Casualties at work: As per the Bureau of Labour Statistics around 695 were killed in workplaces due to contact with some object or equipment, 887 died off falls, 531 due to exposure to some harmful environment in 2017. In USA Machines can replace humans in Hazardous workplaces like mines and certain sections of manufacturing plant. Computer vision can be used for threat assessment in places like construction sites.
Takes away repetitive task, demands skill: As AI takes over the manufacturing plant and automates boring and ordinary human tasks, workers will get to focus on complex and innovative tasks. While AI takes care of unskilled labor, humans can focus on driving innovation and routing their business to advanced levels.
Positive cash flow: While initial investments are significantly high factory automation, there is a scope for long-term positive cash flow. As per a study by the International Federation of Robotics, Japan, by 2025 the global spending on robotics will rise to $66.9 billion. Of this, the highest of 24.4 percent will be spent on industrial robots.
More and more factories are depending on consultants to identify Big Data before engaging in data aggregation. The firms might have to install hardware like sensors to harness data. Further tech teams are deployed to custom build algorithms to suit production data. Rolls-Royce uses big data extensively particularly for modeling new aircraft engines. Analysis of Big Data unlocks insights and can save precious hardware from being a waste of experiments. Similar to past industrial revolutions, the Fourth Industrial Revolution can improve the quality of life. As per optimists, while humans are getting replaced by machines, it would make the jobs that survive automation, more stable. The route is clear, as the factory automation drives the revenue generation.
- Allen-Bradley [Rockwell Automation]
- GE Intelligent Platforms