To create faster, more flexible and efficient processes, the Fourth Industrial Revolution also referred to as Industry 4.0, promotes the union of physical and digital resources, connecting machines, systems and assets as a way to produce higher quality items at reduced costs.
Below are the nine pillars of Industry 4.0 and their relevance to industrial activity:
- The Internet of Things: refers to the networking and connectivity of smart devices.
- Augmented Reality: displays digital content in the real word through a device, such as a mobile phone or special eyeglasses.
- Simulation: leverage real-time data to reflect the physical world of product development and production processes in a virtual environment.
- Additive Manufacturing: these technologies are already playing an important role in key areas as design, prototyping and low-volume production.
- System Integration: result in an agile manufacturing environment allowing real time production corrections and quick pivots.
- Cloud Computing: provides scaleable storage and increased computing power, improves data accessibility and integrity, helping to eliminate data silos.
- Autonomous Systems: robots designed to work in ways similar to humans, with the added ability to monitor and transmit data.
- Cybersecurity: preparation and protection of company information systems and production lines from cyberthreats.
- Big Data Analytics: common theme among all of these pillars and new technologies is data collection and analysis.