The increase in competition among industries in today’s world demands high-quality products with excellent consistency at competitive prices. And to stay ahead in this situation, most companies are considering different new product designs and integrated manufacturing techniques, which are in line with the use of automated devices.
Among several moves, most companies employ one unique solution to stay ahead of their game is industrial automation. Industrial automation helps increase production rate, product quality, and reliability while reducing design and overall production costs by adopting new innovative technologies.
What is Industrial Automation?
Automation is many steps ahead of mechanization, which combines machinery mechanism and human aided efforts to perform tasks. Human decision making plays a significant role in mechanization. Whereas, industrial automation uses control systems like computers or robots, and information technology to handle several processes and types of machinery in industries, eradicating human effort. Automation is the step beyond mechanization in the scope of industrialization.
Types of Industrial Automation
Industrial automation is employed globally among mighty industries with automated systems left to perform nearly all manufacturing tasks. However, human interaction with these automated systems varies by application. With the availability of different application of industrial automation, they all fall into one of these major three categories, namely;
- Fixed Automation System
Fixed automation systems use production equipment, assigned with a particular set of tasks with no changes to any of these tasks. These kinds of systems are commonly employed in continuous flow processes like conveyors and mass production systems.
- Programmable Automation System
The use of programmable automation systems gives room for the sequence of operation and machinery configuration to be changed, using electronic controls. These systems are preferable for batch process production, and reprograming these systems for tasks requires enormous effort and consumes a lot of time.
- Flexible Automation System
Flexible automation systems can also be referred to as soft automation. It possesses similar features, just like the programmable automation but offers greater flexibility for changeovers. One great advantage flexible automation system has over others is that product changeover is possible via a control system, which occurs quickly and automatically.
Why is Automation Needed?
Many manufacturers in today’s competitive world encounter different challenges, some of which include increasing complex supply chains, harsh manufacturing environments, competing at the highest level with low marginal cost, and meeting the latest energy-efficient standards. Most of these reasons drove manufacturers towards industrial automation as it helps to solve most of these challenges by providing;
- Increased Productivity: Industrial automation allows factories and industrial processes to run a continuous mass 24/7 throughout the year, thereby improving productivity and reducing downtime.
- Improved product Quality: This system uses monitoring and adaptive control at different production stages with no human intervention and human error, enhancing product quality. Its performance doesn’t decline even after many hours of continuous work.
- Greater consistency: automated systems works at a fixed and continuous pace. Therefore, their duration of production doesn’t change.
- Flexibility: Unlike the traditional production chain that takes days to train machine operators when implementing a new task, automated systems get quickly reprogramed to take on new tasks easily. It’s always fast and provides greater flexibility in the overall production process.
- Safety: the use of robots is safer in a hazardous working environment for humans. Ever since OSHA was passed across in the United States to ensure employees’ safety, robotics and automated systems became popular in the country’s factories.
Are you considering the use of automated systems for your industry? Aura Engineering is a renowned automation engineering company in the United States, which specializes in providing complex manufacturing solutions by developing economically viable machines and automated systems for companies worldwide. Do not hesitate to discuss your project with us!
Contact us today for a consultation on efficient new solutions to your current or prospective infrastructure needs. 281-485-1105