As this year comes to a close and a whole new year with new possibilities is on the horizon, its a perfect time take a look at some of the hot trends in industrial manufacturing that can help you get a leg up on your competition and save you money.
Manufacturers must embrace technological advances to improve plant productivity, compete against rivals, and maintain and edge with customers.
With 2017 approaching like a freight train, we wanted to share with you the newest manufacturing trends that are becoming standard operating procedures for factories. This is exciting technology that merits further exploration to increase your manufacturing efficiencies and therefore, your bottom line.
1) Insulating Smarter with Thermal Insulation Coatings
Of course we know the most about this trend, because weve experienced it growing over the last decade. No longer are thermal insulation coatings, like our Syneffex technology, a fringe or new insulation. Our coatings are now de rigueur in many factories around the world. In fact, Syneffex insulation coatings are often specified as the sole insulation material for equipment and plants.
The transition from fiberglass/mineral wool and cladding to thermal insulation coatings has occured because of the outstanding portfolio of benefits provided in a single, simple product.
- Longer lifespan
- Prevents corrosion of assets
- Maintains insulating effectiveness over time
- Offers multiple cost saving benefits beyond energy savings
- Easy to install without any downtime
- Protects surfaces from UV, mold/mildew, chemicals, moisture, rust
- Less waste, replacement costs than older insulation methods
- No exterior jacketing needed
- Conforms to any size or shape of equipment
- Non-toxic, water-based, low VOC, earth friendly material
If youd like to check out the new standard in insulation technology just download a Syneffex coatings brochure here.
2) 3D Printing to Enhance Productivity
Printing out whole products with a 3D printer is still a fairly new concept, and the technology is continuing to evolve leaps and bounds every year. Some of the most useful and cost effective uses include printing of smaller parts that are vital to the whole, such as rings, valves, or plastic parts.
For example, manufacturer BAE systems used 3D printing to keep a part in their regional jetliner that suddenly became unavailable from the supplier. This not only saved costly retooling time and testing, but they also were able to not only reduce the cost of the part but the lead time as well.
3) Product Development Through Social Sourcing
In the age of instant feedback via social media channels like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, no longer do companies have to go through a lengthy qualification process for new product development. Their customers are there in real time, all day, and happy to feedback.
While social media has been around barely 10-years now, its really just begun to completely mature, and now companies are realizing how they can leverage those connections to reduce the time and cost of new product development and more significantly target their products and services to what their clients need.
LinkedIn gives plant managers and other industry professionals a unique new way to interface with their suppliers, customers, and peers in a way that can greatly increase business, decrease communication times, and positively impact the bottom line.
You can find Syneffex on LinkedIn here.
4) Internet of Everything | Plant Connectivity
While the term The Internet of Everything can sound a little vague, if youve seen the new Google Home commercial where a father is reading a story to his daughter and stops to ask Google Home what sounds whales make, then you get the idea.
The Internet of Everything, simply means using the power of the internet connection to connect people, data, processes, and equipment instantly. What this means for manufacturing is the ability for a factory manager to ask a voice enabled app or device what the current production output is for a particular line or to set up alerts that will text the appropriate team when a system needs attention.
Theres a great article from Industry Week that tells the story of how one of General Electrics battery manufacturing plants uses over 10,000 sensors to measure temperature, humidity, air pressure and machine operating data in real time to give them more control over a successful batch production process and stop problems before they happen.