The progression of mankind and civilization has been fueled by the advancement of technology. As technology has advanced, products and services have improved and so have people’s lives. If there’s one sector of civilization that has certainly been impacted by the progression of technology, it’s the world of manufacturing. In fact, some of the most significant transformations in manufacturing technology are occurring right now. Below are three.
Of all the technological changes currently facing manufacturing, automation is perhaps the most significant. Automation refers to the use of robots and computers to perform work and tasks that once had to be completed by human beings. In fact, it has been predicted that automation could replace as many as 800 million jobs.
Automation can increase efficiency and lower costs. It’s also easier than ever thanks to automation systems available from companies like Mars International. Still, it also presents serious questions and challenges for society as well. If all those jobs are automated, what will happen to those workers?
Systems like the Allen-Bradley SLC 500 have become the choice of manufacturing engineers worldwide and have forever transformed the industry.
Another big force for change in manufacturing has been big data. Big data may seem like another meaningless buzzword, but it’s an easy concept to understand. Big data is a business philosophy in which as much data as possible regarding a company’s business processes is recorded and stored for later analysis.
In the context of manufacturing, big data has big benefits. If you are able to record information regarding the performance of machinery in your factory, you may be able to predict future breakdowns before they ever happen. This means being able to order replacement parts before you need them. This in turn, can mean fewer interruptions in production. Efficiency and profits will increase as a result.
Lastly, another huge significant development for manufacturing has been the introduction of 3D printing on a wide scale. More companies than ever before now have access to commercial 3D printing technology. In years past, production runs for products had to be rather massive to justify the fixed costs required. With 3D printing, however, production runs for a product can be relatively tiny. In fact, products modified to the specifications of single clients or customers are now cost effective thanks to this amazing technology.
Overall, technology will continue to evolve and improve well into the distant future. As that occurs, manufacturing will evolve and improve in tandem. While there may be some challenges to be overcome, the benefits for companies and consumers are clear.