04/07/2021 10:00:00 CEST, Reutlingen New software platform merges data from process modules of different manufacturers | Data analysis using smartPRODUCTIONKIT increases plant availability and production quality | Data evaluation both in real-time and retrospectively to enable IIoT applications such as Predictive Maintenance

High-tech engineering company Manz has combined its extensive expertise in monitoring production facilities in the new software platform smartPRODUCTIONKIT. The platform will be available to all users of Manz process modules and fully integrated production lines across all industries. New Manz machines can be equipped with the smartPRODUCTIONKIT at the customer’s request, while older models can be retrofitted.

Manz's new software platform obtains machine and production data via the standardized OPC UA interface. This means that the smartPRODUCTIONKIT can also be used to monitor and evaluate manufacturing steps in process modules that do not come from Manz. With its open development environment, the new smartPRODUCTIONKIT software platform can be continuously expanded with new applications and features. Users can use the solution both cloud-based and edge-based.

"The trigger for the development of the smartPRODUCTIONKIT was the feedback from our customers that they wanted a complete solution for their production data monitoring covering all process steps of their manufacturing. One of the market's most important requirements was the ability to evaluate data in real time in order to ensure high system availability while maintaining the highest product quality," says Andreas Schöller, head of the Basic Technologies division at Manz AG. "Many manufacturing companies had become aware that their production lines often have very high-quality, integrated measurement and inspection equipment - but that they rarely intelligently evaluate the wealth of data generated in this way in order to systematically increase their machine utilization and profitability. This is exactly where smartPRODUCTIONKIT comes into play."

smartPRODUCTIONKIT from Manz obtains data from all desired process or inspection modules of a production line. This data is displayed numerically or graphically on a screen that can be freely configured with widgets, the Production Cockpit. Production data can be evaluated individually for each process module or across the entire line and, for example, can be provided with alarm functions. The entire production process can be analyzed and optimized using all available data points, including the network or data storage capacities. New OPC UA-enabled systems can be integrated into the production data monitoring per mouse click. Seamless traceability and documentation of the products to be manufactured is also possible with the smartPRODUCTIONKIT if all assemblies and also workpiece carriers are provided with unique ID markers. Manz thus fulfills a key requirement of the automotive and medical technology industries.

Finally, Manz wants to use the smartPRODUCTIONKIT to enable its clients to introduce Industrial Internet of Things or IIoT applications. These include, for example, a forecast function for better production planning or Predictive Maintenance, the predictive maintenance of production equipment, also via remote access. This enables processes to be optimized and maintenance costs to be reduced.

Technological highlights of Manz's new smartPRODUCTIONKIT software platform

  • monitors and analyzes previously often unused production data from process modules or entire production lines with OPC UA interfaces, not just “Made by Manz”
  • Data evaluation in real time or retroactive for machines and network
  • Complete traceability of the products to be manufactured enables fast error analysis and optimization
  • as a software platform open development environment for quick extension with new apps
  • enables IIoT applications such as forecasting functions or Predictive Maintenance
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