Fourth Industrial Revolution
The term Fourth Industrial Revolution appeared in 2011 in Germany at the Hannover Industrial Fair. The Fourth Industrial Revolution known as Industry 4.0 is defined as the solution provided by information technology to meet the complex challenges faced by industry.
The Fourth Industrial Revolution is not a specific technology, but rather a group of technologies that work together in order to reach the idea of a smart factory. The idea of the smart factory is based on achieving communication between manufacturing equipment, raw materials stock, energy resources, all devices, as well as the personnel in the factory.
Although the idea seems difficult to achieve, but it is completely feasible. internet acts as the link that connects the sensors connected to the machines with all the other devices in the factory, as well as the portable devices used by the factory workers. This connection results in a smart network that connects machines with devices to humans, and the sensors transmit an instant image from the operating environment that surrounds the machines to the devices that analyze that information, which in turn sends operating reports to specialists in case decisions are needed.
How can the fourth industrial revolution technologies be used to improve equipment operating rates?
As a vivid example of taking advantage of the Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies to reach the highest operating rates, one of the engine factories in Germany connected sensors to industrial equipment in the factory. The function of these sensors is to measure all the conditions surrounding the machine, such as the degree of vibration, temperature and other indicators, and this data is transmitted around the clock to where sophisticated software analyzes that data immediately, while noting and recording equipment operating patterns so that these programs can predict the malfunctions that occur. It can happen to machines if their temperature increases, for example, or if their vibration rate increases...etc.
This ability to predict failures before they occur gave the company the ability to carry out proactive maintenance of the machines before they break down, and thus the company was able to eliminate the downtime and then reach the highest possible operating rate of the equipment. The aforementioned company announced that it had managed to achieve a 10% increase in equipment productivity by using this technology from the fourth industrial revolution techniques.