Helping to demystify industrial
digitalisation in UK manufacturing

External driving forces pushing Smart Factory adoption

14 July, 2020

Part one of the Stratus Technologies Smart Factory series delved into what’s driving the adoption of digital technology, what’s holding it back and what the most sought-after benefits are from the factory floor. The results showed that manufacturers are under constant pressure to be more efficient and profitable which is leading them to new technologies. But what about outside of the organisation? Are customers with more information and specific needs driving the need for digitalisation? Greg Hookings, head of business development – digitalisation, Stratus Technologies, explains further.

Digital food for thought: Smart factories and the use of AI from an automation perspective

12 June, 2020

Factory automation has traditionally provided the food industry with faster, more reliable and cleaner production capacity - however, with the advent of the smart factory and commercial AI the factory of the very near future is starting to make production efficiency improvement decisions itself. Chris Evans, marketing & operations group manager at Mitsubishi Electric reports.

Digital transformation is no longer an optional extra

26 May, 2020

Karl Heinrich Lauri, managing team member at MRPeasy asks: can a smaller manufacturer looking to survive and prosper in this changing world afford not to embrace the digitalisation of the business process?

Being smarter about Smart Factory

21 April, 2020

Manufacturers are under pressure to be more efficient and profitable, driving them to new technologies born from the fourth industrial revolution. Completed by teknowlogy Group, a new survey has been released showcasing the use cases, barriers and future of the Smart Factory. Over two issues, Stratus Technologies will be offering insight into the results and what this means for the industrial sector. Greg Hookings, head of business development – digitalisation, Stratus Technologies reports.

Bridging the skills gap with automated engineering

14 April, 2020

According to the State of Engineering Survey by Engineering UK, the industry requires 265,000 new skilled entrants annually in order to meet demand by 2024. Martyn Williams, managing director at industrial software provider COPA-DATA UK, examines Britain’s engineering skills shortage and explains how automated engineering can redefine the role of the manufacturing engineer and ultimately bridge the skills gap.

Are you ready to own the product lifecycle?

19 February, 2020

Operational data from smart products can unlock opportunities to delight your customers, improve your future designs and fend off competitive threats. To capitalise on those opportunities, you need an agile data platform, says Graham McCall, vice president operations UK, Aras.

Cobot strategy

06 February, 2020

Peter Lange, business development manager, robotics at Omron Europe takes a look at collaborative robotics in manufacturing and how successful cobot projects involve safety, quality and flexibility.

How manufacturers can prepare for 5G

23 October, 2019

Heiko Noll, product manager devices at industrial communication solutions provider INSYS icom, explores what manufacturers should do to prepare their machines and plants for the 5G roll out.

Smart factories and data models

21 August, 2019

Moving into the smart factory revolution, it is guaranteed to bring smarter automation into the workplace, and with this comes innovative solutions. Nevertheless, how can manufacturing efficiency be improved? First things first, it all starts with a deep dive into the data. Tim Foreman, European R&D manager, Omron, reports.

GAMBICA: A practical journey to a digital future

14 June, 2019

Victoria Montag – sector head for Industrial Automation, GAMBICA, begins the special three-part GAMBICA serialisation of the King Power Stadium discussions on digitisation.

2019 - The year of 3D printing

11 June, 2019

Paul Croft, director of 3DGBIRE and Ultimaker GB and founder of CREATE Education Project explains, 2019 will be the year organisations of every size begin to drive new value from 3D printing.

GAMBICA: A practical journey to a digital future

16 May, 2019

In December 2018 eight GAMBICA Industrial Automation members gathered around a table at the King Power Stadium in Leicester to be recorded discussing IT, cyber security, cloud computing and of course automation and what it all means for Smart Manufacturing. In a special three part serialisation in Smart Machines & Factories, Victoria Montag – sector head for Industrial Automation, GAMBICA, will be looking at the output of the discussion that took place and covers a pragmatic guide to getting started on your smart manufacturing journey.

Could AI security prevent hacks?

03 April, 2019

Graham Smith, head of marketing at Microsoft recruitment partner Curo Talent, explains the role of automation in IT security and how it could address the skills shortage.

3D printing: Which process is suitable for which application?

26 March, 2019

3D printing was first used in rapid prototyping, but today is increasingly used in additive processes that enable volume production of plastic and metal parts. It is also used to manufacture parts that are too complex for traditional injection moulding. The trend is towards modular and scalable manufacturing solutions tailored to a particular application. Smart Machines & Factories provides an overview of the processes and trends.

Benefits of edge computing in industry

15 January, 2019

George Walker, managing director of industrial control and automation provider Novotek UK and Ireland, explains the core benefits of edge computing.

3D printing - driving the sustainability agenda

19 December, 2018

Critics of 3D printing, or additive manufacturing, have long cited the technology’s reliance on plastic filament as the primary print material, and it would seem that with the global focus on reducing plastic wastage they have a point - or do they? Has 3D printing now reached a maturity level where it cannot only support the sustainability agenda, but actively drive it? Smart Machines & Factories reports.

Optimising plant performance through digitalisation

17 December, 2018

Industrial plant operators are increasingly supporting better decision-making by using the digitalisation capabilities available through instrumentation and plant management systems. Saverio Barbero Lodigiani and David Lincoln for ABB Measurement and Analytics in the UK, explain how these capabilities can help to boost plant and process performance by providing the data needed for smarter operation and maintenance.

Plug and play in industrial plants

16 October, 2018

Contradictory to the common belief that technology necessary for Industry 4.0 is expensive, the Combine and Conquer report by Accenture found that combining technologies such as AR/VR, big data and machine learning can save large businesses an average of £60,000 per employee. Nick Boughton, sales manager at industrial systems integrator, Boulting Technology, explores the growing trend of plug and play technologies.

The slow journey to the paperless factory

27 June, 2018

A sheet of A4 is convenient. But your data won't be exact or real time. Kevin Bull is product strategy director at Columbus UK, reports.

Digital transformation and the automotive sector

23 March, 2018

British Fluid Power Association member companies Festo and SMC Pneumatics consider the growing trend towards automation and digitalisation within the automotive industry, and the enduring importance of more traditional technologies such as pneumatics within the fast-developing digital transformation landscape. Smart Machines & Factories reports.

Data and the smart machine revolution

23 March, 2018

How can manufacturing efficiency be improved? Any significant optimisation of production lines is getting increasingly difficult to achieve. Bringing smarter automation into the workplace offers an innovative solution, but it all starts with data. Lots and lots of data. Smart Machines & factories spoke to Tim Foreman, Omron’s European R&D manager.

Top tips for implementing Industry 4.0

01 February, 2018

The term ‘Industry 4.0’ has quickly become the “hot topic” across industry, but is it actually understood, and is it being implemented correctly? Steve Askins, UK engineering director at ERIKS UK & Ireland, offers some practical guidance to help you cut through the hype and get the most from the fourth industrial revolution.

Game changing technology

13 December, 2017

Smart Machines & Factories looks at how Augmented Reality (AR) and cobots are driving the next wave of automation.

Building the smart factory of the future

13 December, 2017

Jonathan Wilkins at EU Automation, explains why increased levels of automation are a good thing.

Digital opportunities

13 December, 2017

Industry proposals to boost the UK’s manufacturing sector have been unveiled at the Manufacturing Technology Centre in Coventry with the publication of the Industrial Digitalisation Review. Smart Machines & Factories reports.

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