AI IN MANUFACTURING
The value of AI in manufacturing lies in reducing product defects, automating quality control, increasing capacity and streamlining maintenance. Highly automated manufactures are ideal candidates for sophisticated analytics as they are already well-instrumented with sensors and controllers. However, less automated manufactures can also beneficially utilize robotics and AI by eliminating inefficient manual processes.
According to a global consulting firm McKinsey, manufacturing industries have captured about only 20%-30% of the potential value of data and analytics to date – and most of that has occurred at a handful of industry-leading companies. This is despite the fact that advanced manufacturers have been working with automation and lean ways of working for decades. By embarking on an AI journey, far more complicated and bigger amounts of information can be processed across manufacturing operations and across the supply chain – detecting inefficiencies, relationships and predicting possible issues before they even emerge.
Many applications are using different regression and classification models and even natural language processing.
Areas of AI application in Manufacturing
- Quality control can be enhanced through vision systems by adding image recognition models based on convolutional neural networks e.g. to inspect and sort for defects.
- Downtime of equipment can be minimized by analyzing data for each manufacturing step and/or for a chain of linked operations e.g. moldings importance on assembly output.
- Predictive maintenance can proactively identify problems related to spare-parts, software, hardware and firmware to eliminate possible points of failure or degraded performance.
- In general: models can be implemented so that they continuously learn from data, accounting for changing conditions and the current state of a specific machine.
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