MachineBuilding.net Technical Articles Index
Integrated factory automation networks key to Industry 4.0
As interest grows in the concepts of Industry 4.0, it has become clear that the plant communications network will be the key enabler. Industry 4.0 relies upon the integration and optimisation of communications between field devices, production control systems, enterprise level IT systems and beyond. The key challenge is to ensure seamless communications between these disparate worlds. John Browett, General Manager of CLPA Europe, examines how the gigabit Ethernet CC-Link IE open network technology resolves these issues.
Smart manufacturing – the challenges and benefits
Chris Evans, Marketing & Operations Group Manager at Mitsubishi Electric explores what is actually meant by “smart manufacturing” by considering the benefits of adopting the concept and what challenges may lie ahead.
Three ways to boost British productivity
The UK is not much more productive now than it was after the 2008 recession. However, because productivity is measured by the amount of goods produced per person per hour, Government creates incentives and applies pressure on businesses to simply hire more people. Here, Stephen Harding, managing director of materials handling expert Gough Engineering, explains why simply adding more people is not the answer and outlines three things businesses can do to genuinely boost manufacturing productivity
Specifying a replacement hydraulic pump: beyond certifications
Pumps for hydraulic applications are typically highly specialised towards certain applications and environments, a reality which must be noted by the MRO professional. While a pump may achieve certain certifications such as those outlined by DNV GL, Lloyds and API which can guarantee a certain level of competency, how does this actually translate to specifying a replacement for a particular application? Jonathan Walker, Engineering Manager at Oilgear, explores the innate features and processes that can ensure hydraulic pump performance is not simply defined by basic certification, but offers further benefits to the application that reduce the risks of downtime.
Efficiency by design
Mark Fairhurst, Technical Director, BHR Group, discusses efficiency by design.
The pneumatic-electrical dynamic in motion control
Representatives from British Fluid Power Association (BFPA) member companies IMI Precision Engineering, Asco Numatics and Metal Work, survey the current state of play regarding automated motion control systems, and consider the increasingly close relationship between pneumatic and electrical technologies.
Five innovative uses for PLM
Jigsaw fanatic Graham Andrew, along with a team of over 200 people, tried to complete a mammoth 33,600-piece jigsaw puzzle in 2016, only to realise there were four pieces missing. With so many people and parts involved, this was a tricky task to undertake and organise, as is often the case in manufacturing. Good product lifecycle management (PLM) can help manufactures get it right first time, and not lose any valuable pieces along the way. Here, Geoff Turner, PLM consultant at Design Rule, explains five innovative uses for PLM that companies can use to help keep projects on track.
The importance of best practice in hydraulic fluid selection
Bosch Rexroth has restated the importance of choosing correctly rated hydraulic fluids to optimise performance and safety in mobile applications. The advice comes as the company issues its own Fluid Rating List recommending the most appropriate high-performance fluids for use with its hydraulic pumps and motors. This complements the requirements of international standards ISO6473-4 and ISO4006.