As if to prove that collaboration is central to any Industry 4.0 strategy, Open IIoT held the second of its east coast demonstration days in Sydney this week spreading the word on the ease of implementation and the accrued benefits of embracing the Industry 4.0 mindset.
The Open IIoT panel is made up of a group of Australia’s key players in automation, SMC, Nord Drivesystems, Balluff, Beckhoff Automation, systems integrator ZI-Argus and now joined by cobot originator Universal Robots.
Together they have created a demonstrator unit, first seen earlier this year at the Auspack show in Melbourne, which illustrates how the collaboration of automation components can create a complete IIoT end-user system, complete with a production dashboard that unlocks the power of the system data collected.
The system was a central element of the Sydney event, hosted at SMC’s Australia New Zealand headquarters at Castle Hill, together with a panel discussion on key aspects of the Industry 4.0 message.
In an interesting departure from normal practice, the live audience were invited to SMS their questions to the panel – a strategy that allowed the event moderator, SMC’s Jozef Ceh, to progress the discussion without the inevitable duplication that can often waste time in such events.
The panel, comprising Yousef Saleem from Beckhoff Automation, Ian Choo from Universal Robots, Max Jarmatz from Nord Drivesystems and Jim Wallace from Balluff, fielded questions ranging from suggesting easy first steps for companies embarking on the Industry 4.0 journey to explaining how adopters could show RoI on the exercise.
If any of the audience were unsure about the benefits of Industry 4.0 before the Sydney Open IIoT demonstration day, they would certainly have been swayed by what they saw and heard.
However, the key takeaways from the event were many and varied, ranging from “it’s all about saving energy” to “it’s all about collaboration” and – probably most importantly – “it’s all about the bottom line”.