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Using e-learning to master industrial data
Finding enough time to complete training alongside normal role responsibilities is one of the biggest limiting factors for the workforce. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, new ways of working and changing technologies were disrupting traditional roles and the skills engineers need to do them. The current lockdown conditions mean that workers can use e-learning to develop key skills and knowledge to ensure success in the new operations in a post-pandemic era, says George Walker, managing director of industrial automation expert Novotek UK and Ireland.
The amount of data that is generated, communicated and manipulated in modern industries is truly staggering. For instance, over a terabyte of data is saved each day in power production alone, and this is quickly increasing as time marches on. Here, George Walker, at industrial automation expert Novotek UK & Ireland, discusses what goes into these multi-terabyte data handling systems..
As the IIoT grows and data become abundant, Novotek argues visualisation will become necessary for success
Today, there are almost as many devices connected to the internet as there are people in the world to use them. By most measures, approximately half of these devices are in industrial environments, collectively making up the industrial internet of things (IIoT). Here, George Walker, managing director of industrial data specialist Novotek UK and Ireland, explains how manufacturers can use connected devices strategically.
Could investing in supporting software save headaches?
Benjamin Franklin enjoyed this old proverb: “A little neglect may breed mischief. For want of a nail, the shoe was lost. For want of a shoe the horse was lost, and for want of a horse the rider was lost.” The message can be easily ignored, that seemingly unimportant factors have dramatic knock-on effects, and omitting them entirely invites grave consequences. Here, Sean Robinson, service leader at industrial automation expert Novotek UK & Ireland, explains how a little forethought and investment can sidestep imposing future problems.
Automated food manufacturing is key to balancing short- and long-term goals
Food plant managers could learn from Aesop’s fabled race between the tortoise and the hare. Intensified competition can cause companies to focus on short-term results, like the losing hare, rather than invest in long-term goals like the winning tortoise. Here, Sean Robinson, service leader at industrial automation expert Novotek UK and Ireland, discusses the issues surrounding short-termism and how these can overcome with automation.
The fundamental concepts that keep a well-designed engine running are quite comparable to those of industrial production lines. While they perform entirely different tasks, achieving continuous, smooth and efficient operation is heavily emphasised in both cases. For the engine, the flow of coolant and oils keeps things turning over, but for a production line the flow of data is imperative. George Walker, managing director of industrial automation expert Novotek UK & Ireland, unpicks this analogy and explains how dataflow is key to production line success.
Is the focus on smart factories pricing out businesses?
In early 2019, the UK’s first smart factory was created, using the newly launched 5G communications network to facilitate quick data transfer speeds. This might be a successful step forward for industry, but George Walker, managing director of industrial automation provider Novotek UK and Ireland, believes it doesn’t reflect the state of smart manufacturing for many UK businesses. In fact, he argues that most of UK industry is being priced out of the smart revolution.
The global population is set to reach nine billion by 2050. Combined with the threat of climate change and the scarcity of natural resources, the food and beverage industry must adapt to fulfil increasing demands for produce. Here, Sean Robinson, service leader at food and beverage automation provider Novotek UK and Ireland, explores how automation could play a role in maintaining sustainable practices in food and beverage manufacturing.
Modular systems in industrial applications
Plants have increasingly scrapped keyboards and mice on the shop floor in favour of a more responsive human machine interface (HMI) approach. Against this backdrop, Ian Brett, area sales manager at industrial automation provider Novotek UK and Ireland, discusses the benefits of integrating an industrial display into a modular systems architecture.
Focussing less on tech and more on impact is key to success in the 4IR
Industry 4.0. The industrial internet of things. Digitalisation. Smart manufacturing. The fourth industrial revolution. There are dozens of different names for the uptake in connected technologies and the convergence of IT and OT systems taking place in industry at the moment. One thing most people do agree on, however, is that it’s tech-driven. But should this really be the case? Here, George Walker, managing director of industrial automation expert Novotek UK and Ireland, makes the case for goal-driven digitalisation.