A Pragmatic Approach to the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR / I4.0)

Amidst the noise within the drive to Industry 4.0, a strategy is forming amongst enlightened businesses. As increasingly market leaders align their products to I4.0 or 4IR (4th Industrial Revolution) as its becoming known in the UK, how can you separate the marketing spin from the game changing technology?

May 25th saw the IET host an event provided by Control 2K in partnership with TATA Steel to dispel some of the snake oil surrounding the Fourth Industrial revolution, I4.0. The focus of the event was different from similar events that discuss the issues, in that practical demonstration of technology at the forefront of this new age in manufacturing was key. Participants had an opportunity to see demonstrations of tools that are available right now that can be applied within SME's help solve production issues using a Digital Manufacturing approach. Demonstrations included VR and 3D printing from TATA, Realtime Virtual Factory (Vactory), ANDON 4.0 and CyberPhysical devices by Control 2K, IO Link Smart sensor networks by Balluff, and BOSCH Rexroth demonstrating their IndrDrive hardware and the Open Core Engineering platform for I4.0 implementation.