Digital Manufacturing Applications:
1. Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)
Internet of Things is the centerpiece of Industrial Revolution 4.0. Interconnecting people through the internet to share their stories. Their stories come in a form of data. The sharing of data through the internet has piqued the interests of many industries. Industries use this advantage and implement them on machines. Monitoring their condition and performance is easier with the help of the internet. IIoT has other uses. Asset management & tracking is one of their major use.
2. Big Data and Analytics
Big data consists of large and complex data sets generated by IoT devices. Like the ones in many manufacturing industries. Analyzing these data could prove useful to convert them into actionable business insights. The analyzed data could be used in times of alerting errors in any step of production to the workers. Thus preventing disasters before they even happen.
3. Cloud Computing
IIoT allows an exchange of a large amount of data rapidly. Remarkably so that they cannot be handled manually. Cloud computing act as a storage of data so that it can be managed and processed more efficiently. This way, industries can avoid having heavy computing power.
4. Advanced Robotics
With the help of software and sensors, comes advanced robotics. These robots are able to perform difficult yet delicate tasks. While analyzing the information they receive and act upon them. Collaborative robots (Cobots) are even designed to work safely alongside people. Ridding them of doing dangerous processes.
5. Digital Twins
A digital twin is a digital representation of a real-world product, computer, process, or system through real-time simulation. It enables businesses to better understand, evaluate and optimize their processes.
6. Augmented and Virtual Reality (AR/VR)
The virtual and physical worlds could collide with augmented reality technology. In industries, workers are able to manage the manufacturing processes and improve decision-making.
7. Additive Manufacturing (AM)
Additive manufacturing is 3D printing on an industrial level. Which is consumer-oriented and mass-produced. Instead of ink and paper, they print out specific materials layer by layer to form voluminous shapes. Here are some examples of AM technology applications.
You might find printing foods a regular thing in the future. Obviously with the help of AM technologies. It’s been reported that researchers are able to 3D print cookies. And not just simply printing them. They were also customizable. Specifically their flavor, texture, shape, and color.
- Medical Application
AM technologies have indeed transformed the biopharmaceutical industry, medical technology, and surgical procedures. The development of craniofacial, dental prosthetics and tissue engineering are some of the examples where the technology has taken part. The current trend for this field is using AM technology in the development of regenerative medicine, drug delivery systems, cancer therapies, and bioprinting. It is known that AM technology can create intricate customized products. So, another trend for them in this field is making personalized pre-operative manufacturing based on a digital 3D model of the individual patient.
- Construction Engineering
Homelessness might be less of a problem in the near future. Companies have been developing more on 3D printers that print buildings. The results are concrete houses that are 4000 USD cheap, which are finished in 48 hours max. Conventionally, architects created architectural models manually by hand. Unfortunately, this consumes a lot of time and money. AM technology can help them overcome those shortcomings. Models can now be printed by using computer-aided design (CAD) software. The products can be made in higher detail at a low cost in mere hours.
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