Over the recent years, integration of local computing power and the Internet of Things (IoT) have helped transform ordinary sensors into smart sensors. These smart sensors are capable of carrying out various tasks, such as doing complex calculations on measured data locally. Also, the size of these sensors have become small, so they can be safely attached to difficult-to-reach and potentially dangerous equipment. That said, here are five key uses of smart sensors in the manufacturing industry.
1) Monitor, Control & Improve Operations with Data-Backed Insights
Big data has a huge impact on the manufacturing industry. According to a survey by Deloitte 87% manufacturers claim that Industry 4.0 will lead to more social and economic equality and stability.
Smart sensors produce information by linking different devices and systems, allowing different machines to communicate with each other. So, manufacturers can monitor equipment and system performance, aggregate all generated data, and benchmark, compare as well as analyze data sets.
2) Predict Equipment Failure or Trigger Maintenance Protocols
In an attempt to remain profitable, producers are slashing operations and maintenance budgets. Minimizing the maintenance requirement can save costs and improve overall efficiencies.
Smart sensors allow manufacturers to lower their Replacement Asset Value (RAV) by increasing unnecessary scheduled maintenance, component replacement costs, and business downtime capacity. The sensors study data that can detect patterns that can foresee the need to service equipment. This data is then used to send alerts to notify users of potential issues so they can be prevented before they become points of failure.
3) Log Data Automatically for Historical Records and Regulatory Compliance
EPA or other environmental regulations may affect manufacturers. Standards and industry-specific regulations from OSHA, ISO and Energy Star require manufacturing plants to be complained about strict rules. So, manufacturers will be required to generate reports to prove their compliance. These reports can be provided by smart sensors installed in manufacturing equipment or warehouse systems. The sensors will log data like energy consumption, humidity, temperature, hours of operation, maintenance, and production line outputs.
4) Receive Anomaly Warnings that Affect the System and Quality Standards
Smart sensors can detect system anomalies that could affect production output or product quality and offer real-time notification of such issues. So, to avoid business downtime, manufacturers can be proactive and resolve issues in a timely manner with such smart sensor technologies.
5) Accelerate the Flow of Information and Responsiveness to Market Conditions
Smart sensors allow manufacturers to adopt agile methodologies, so that real-time changes can be made to processes that can increase production output. Sensor-generated information will increase transparency across the plant and provide visual representation of peaks and flows across the factory.
Manufacturers can be more responsive by looking at customer demands, scale their businesses more easily, ensuring that productivity always leads to profitability.
Smart sensors and manufacturing digitization will enable companies to continue manufacturing in a manner that is more transparent, more effective and of higher quality. As a result of greater accuracy throughout the factory, producers will be more efficient and also more profitable.