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Top Technologies in Manufacturing Today Include Digital Manufacturing, Collaborative Robots, and Multi-Material Joining, Report Says

Factory Automation

NEEDHAM, Mass.— A new testbed for next-generation factories will test open IoT platforms that seamlessly integrate factory automation (FA) in the front lines of manufacturing, along with information technologies (IT) that support management and operations, the Industrial Internet Consortium® (IIC) announced recently. The testbed project, dubbed The Factory Automation Platform as a Service (FA PaaS) Testbed, will be led by IIC member organizations Hitachi, Mitsubishi Electric, and Intel Japan.

“Manufacturing data is needed for improved productivity and overall optimization in the global supply chain to connect the front lines of manufacturing with management, suppliers, and customers,” said Dr. Richard Soley, executive director, IIC, in a release. “But there is also a need for secure connections between a variety of devices in the FA environment and IT services to accommodate big data and the cloud. The FA PaaS Testbed is designed to help accelerate the development of applications for next-generation factories, connecting business-to-business applications, and unleashing real economic value to help companies effectively compete in the global marketplace.”

The FA PaaS Testbed includes an IoT data-processing platform, which processes big data; an IoT head-end system; and an IoT gateway, which securely connects the service platform layer with the FA environment. An FA edge device provides functions unique to FA applications and enables communications with FA devices in next-generation factories. An IoT platform provides integration and security between the FA environment and the service platform layer, enabling interoperability between the FA environment, IoT gateways, and the IoT data-processing platform, accelerating application development for next-generation factories.

The FA PaaS Testbed will be verified for secure connections between FA environment and the service platform layer, the flow of operational data from manufacturing, and other functions by June 2017, according to the release. Later, the FA PaaS Testbed will be verified with IIC member companies and customers.

To learn more about the FA PaaS Testbed, visit www.iiconsortium.org/fa-paas.htm.

The Industrial Internet Consortium, an open membership organization with over 240 members from 30 countries, was formed to accelerate the development, adoption, and wide-spread use of interconnected machines and devices, intelligent analytics, and people at work. Founded by AT&T, Cisco, General Electric, IBM, and Intel in March 2014 and managed by the Object Management Group® (OMG®), the Industrial Internet Consortium catalyzes and coordinates the priorities and enabling technologies of the Industrial Internet.

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