Big Data is Useful for Lean Manufacturers

 

 

 

In the article Lean and Big Data: How Manufacturing Is Getting Even Leaner, the author is examining case studies of lean manufacturers using big data to become leaner and more efficient.  According to McKinsey & Co., big data could be worth tens of billions of dollars for Lean manufacturers in the automotive, chemical, FMCG and pharmaceutical industries.  According to the article, a Manufacturing Execution System can generate big data on accuracy of downtime, waste, and WIP which is data that is traditionally used in lean systems.  The overall goal of any lean manufacturer is improved processes specifically through reduced waste and increased efficiencies.  It’s beginning to look like big data can be a great asset in this lean journey.

The cases described outline how big data has become so useful to manufacturers.  One instance was a two-billion-dollar company that uses big data analytics to analyze and understand the habits of repeat customers.  Another instance is that of Intel using predictive analytics to reduce the number of quality control tests on each processor, saving them 3 million dollars in manufacturing costs on that line of processors.  One final case is that of a steel manufacturer using the Monte Carlo simulation with historical data to identify previously unknown bottlenecks.  After the subsequent process improvements, the steel manufacturer saw a 20% increase in throughput.

Finally, big data can help manufactures form answers to two of their most complex questions –

Who is buying what, when, and at what price?

How can we connect what consumers hear, read and view to what they buy and consume?

It all boils down to customer loyalty and sales.  The managers helping make this transformation see the opportunity for lean data to improve their business, and they are taking advantage of it.  They know what data to use and how to use it, which is translating to significant cost savings and separation from the competition.  Those who don’t employ big data are seriously becoming at risk of being left behind.

 

Can you think of a reason why a lean manufacturer wouldn’t want to employ big data?

Do you think the biggest obstacle in using big data is know what data to actually use?

Do you know of any cases where useless big data was used poor decisions were made?

 

https://theleadershipnetwork.com/article/lean-manufacturing/big-data-lean-manufacturing

Study Shows Manufacturing Executives Well Aware of Big Data Benefits

In the article, Big Data Analytics Can Benefit Manufacturers, the author uses data from a recent Honeywell study to show how manufacturing companies are responding to and using big data analytics to enhance their processes.  The Industrial Internet of things is providing significant amounts of data that many manufacturers are taking advantage of.  In particular, manufacturers are using analytics to prevent unscheduled downtime and equipment breakdowns.  Surprisingly, 33% of respondents of the 200-executive survey said they do not plan to invest in analytics, mostly due to lack of funds or lack of  understanding of how the analytics can benefit their company.

One of the most surprising results of this Honeywell survey was that 42% of respondents admitted to running their equipment harder than they should.  Consequently, big data analytics to prevent machine breakdowns is very important, and 70% of respondents said analytics can prevent breakdowns.  Without the proper analytics, manufacturers run the risk of falling behind competitors.  With so much on the line, it is not surprising that 80% of senior executives surveyed in a different executive recruiting firm poll said that investment in the digital transformation is critical.

With a majority of senior level executives understanding that the investment in the digital transformation is so important, the next question is how will a company manage this transformation.  Many companies do not have a Chief Digital Officer, or CDO, so the responsibility moves to the rest of the C-level board to oversee the transformation.  This strategy can bring about issues since the transformation is happening so fast that high level managers already tasked with significant decision making will not put adequate time toward the company’s digital needs.  An ideal situation would be for a company to have a CDO, and preferably a CDO with experience in IT and/or sales.

 

Do you believe companies should invest in a CDO?

How bad will the consequences be for companies that don’t invest in big data analytics?

Which college graduates will be most in demand now that this digital transformation is happening?

 

http://www.eweek.com/database/big-data-analytics-can-benefit-manufacturers-2.html

3D Printers and Embedded Electronics

In the article “Engineers 3D Print First Fully Functional Drone With Embedded Electronics & Aerospace-Grade Material”( http://www.3dprintpulse.com/?open-article-id=5863467&article-title=engineers-3d-print-first-fully-functional-drone-with-embedded-electronics—aerospace-grade-material&blog-domain=3ders.org&blog-title=3ders)  a recent 3D printing innovation is explored. Normally, embedding electronics in 3D prints is a challenge due to the high temperatures used during the printing process (160C). However, Philip Keane, an NTU PhD candidate, modified and embedded commercial grade electronics at key stages throughout the printing of the drone. The drone design is able to support 60kg of suspended weight, and “stands as the first fully operational quadrocopter to be 3D printed in ULTEM 9085 – a high strength, lightweight FDM material certified for use in commercial aircrafts – all in a single step”. While it does state in the article that the “entire process proved to be meticulous”, it did have a successful ending. In total, printing the drone took 14 hours, with 3 individual pauses to embed the necessary electronic equipment. Now that embedding electronics within 3D prints is an option, what future innovations are coming? Only time will tell.

Smart Bulbs at Risk?

In a recent article on the website, govtech.com, the idea of cybersecurity for smart light bulbs is discussed. With regard to ZigBee and Z-Wave protocol, researchers have found major security flaws in smart light bulbs. Tests conducted on Phillips Hue light bulbs showed that they were able to be ‘infected’ with a code that can spread from lightbulb to light bulb. This is done by having a drone fly within a close proximity and transmit to the light bulbs and then control them remotely. How will companies in the IoT business combat these potential security breaches? Will this slow the growth of the IoT industry? What negative impacts will be felt?

The Global Manufacturing Industry is Changing Due to Big Data

 

 

In the article Exploring the new face of manufacturing – Industry 4.0, the author explores how the manufacturing industry is quickly approaching a significant change, coined Industry 4.0.  Industry 4.0 involves big data, improved data analytics, machine-to-machine communication, advanced robotics and 3-D printing.  These changes are happening across the world from Europe to Asia, and there is no sign of letting up.  But with these changes comes a serious amount of data, 4.4 zettabytes by 2020, and the only way to analyze this vast amount of data is big data analytics through cloud computing.

This unique IT infrastructure required to keep and analyze this data have made cloud computing an invaluable tool.  Manufactures need a system that is rapidly scalable to make use of the data pouring in from various channels: sensors in their factories, inventories, raw materials and other segments along the supply chain.  Cloud computing allows manufactures to analyze real-time data to understand product status and quality thus providing a product with less defects.  Cloud computing has taken away the hassle of having to buy physical storage devices while also allowing manufacturers to use the cloud’s different availabilities, capacities, and functionalities.  The data analytics is becoming simpler and more useful quickly which is allowing manufacturers to learn more from the data then ever thought possible.

An interesting separation of cloud computing is the public and private cloud.  The public cloud allows remote manufacturing facilities to leverage modern IT and communications systems without having a large team onsite.  Public clouds also allow customers and partners along the supply chain to access information easily.  The private cloud is best for sensitive data and intellectual property.  In fact, the article speculates that hybrid clouds will emerge that allows manufacturers to have the best of both worlds.

 

Do you believe the cloud is secure?

Are cloud based companies doing enough to keep the cloud secure?

Will a hybrid cloud really offer enough security for sensitive information with regard to the outside world as well as employees?

http://www.businessinsider.in/Exploring-the-new-face-of-manufacturing-Industry-4-0/articleshow/55455654.cms

 

Peru and the Old TPP

 

In the article “Peru’s New Leader Champions Trade in the Trump Era” (https://www.ft.com/content/2e2af8ee-b293-11e6-a37c-f4a01f1b0fa1) , an overview is given of Peru’s trade strategy now that the TPP will most likely be stopped. Per the article, Peru’s president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski believes that it is “fundamental that world trade grows again and that protectionism be defeated”. Currently Peru’s top trading partners are China and the US. Although Kuczuynski confirms that Peru’s relationship with the US remains strong, he is “seeking to deepened ties with Beijing”. Additionally, the day after Trump vowed to scrap the TPP, Peru hosted the Chinese president Xi Jinping. Although Kuczynski hasn’t totally given up on the TPP, he stated that Peru is “considering the merits of a rival Chinese initiative, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership”, which is essentially a new TPP reformed to exclude the US. How many countries would wish to participate in such an agreement? Would the US discourage such an agreement? Only time will tell.

Peru and the Old TPP

In the article “Peru’s New Leader Champions Trade in the Trump Era” (https://www.ft.com/content/2e2af8ee-b293-11e6-a37c-f4a01f1b0fa1) , an overview is given of Peru’s trade strategy now that the TPP will most likely be stopped. Per the article, Peru’s president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski believes that it is “fundamental that world trade grows again and that protectionism be defeated”. Currently Peru’s top trading partners are China and the US. Although Kuczuynski confirms that Peru’s relationship with the US remains strong, he is “seeking to deepened ties with Beijing”. Additionally, the day after Trump vowed to scrap the TPP, Peru hosted the Chinese president Xi Jinping. Although Kuczynski hasn’t totally given up on the TPP, he stated that Peru is “considering the merits of a rival Chinese initiative, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership”, which is essentially a new TPP reformed to exclude the US. How many countries would wish to participate in such an agreement? Would the US discourage such an agreement? Only time will tell.