It is no doubt that various machinists are now enjoying the benefits of Internet of Things, in CNC manufacturing, including CNC machines and other tools as well. Just like any other breakthrough technology, it will need more time to adapt and mature, but the levels of excitement is indeed present in this case.
As any production plant or manufacturing plant, the main goal is to optimize resources in the best way possible, so that not the business benefits from it, but also the customers as well. With increased competition and demand for more better products, along with cost reduction techniques and maintenance free assets, it is always important that the end product should always provide value, besides being high-quality and having high-performance.
In any manufacturing industry, the following are the two main areas that need improvement for the operability of the CNC machines:
- Increasing efficiency of CNC Machines: This is one of the most important aspects that most manufactures look into. Increasing efficiency will help in better use of resources, less wastage and also in better end product production as well. Efficiency also helps in lowering the overall fixed expenses or costs of manufacturing too as well.
- Decreasing the downtimes of CNC Machines: One of the most common problems of using CNC machines, in its continuous state, can lead to increased downtime for the machine. Downtime means that the amount of time the machine is not performing any production, but still the manufacturer has to pay the direct and indirect costs, like labour, rent, etcetera. If downtime can be reduced, then the profitability of the business will also increase as well.
With the help of IoT or Internet of Things, manufacturers can not only eliminate the above two disadvantages, and make CNC machines more better, but also add a few more features along the way as well.
The following are some of the big roles that CNC machines can play in IoT manufacturing:
- CNC Machines integrated with sensors and machine controllers can help in extracting useful data: When CNC machines used for Aluminum Machining Parts, are integrated with various important sensors like, pressure, temperature, etcetera, and then connected to a machine controller – this machine controller can help in collection data and also control the machine as well, with an operation logic. Then with the help of a GPRS enabled gateway, IoT can help in receiving the machine data and storing the important data on a cloud or local server.
- With the help of IoT machine data, operation of CNC Machines can be improved significantly: Since, the data is getting stored in a server, locally or cloud based like Amazon AWS or Microsoft Azure – the data can be accessed and then analysed from anywhere. The machine threshold parameters, as well as real-time monitoring of the machines, can help in really improving the efficiency of the said machine, and even reduce wastage as well. This will also help in reducing downtime and thereby increasing output too.
The same data can be used by the R&D department and CEOs of the manufacturing company, and therefore get a clear idea about the operability of the CNC machines as well, and the needs for improvement and investment.