Archive: Dec 2013

Addressing the human element in automation through alarm management

For decades, manufacturing processes have been the target of increasing efficiency and automation, saving time, money, and energy. However, there is one aspect of the manufacturing process that automation has not been able to address – the human element. One example of this is in manufacturing alarm response. [E]xperts throughout the industry ecosystem are still…

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Automation key to keeping the food industry on the cutting edge

As the increasing use of technology creates the expectations of variety and fast change among people, the food industry is looking to be on the cutting edge of this trend. Adept might just have the answer. Apter said that automation technology enables parameters of a processing system to be adjusted with a quick change of…

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Avoid making mistakes when making automation upgrades

There are a handful of common mistakes that companies make when they upgrade their automation technology. They can make the difference between increased efficiency, production, and savings and playing catch-up as machines need to be replaced. These include: 1: FOCUSING ON THE PROBLEM, NOT STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES The most common mistake made in automation projects is…

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Better factory automation design through biomechatronics

Automation company Festo has been experimenting with biomechatronics as a way to better develop their automation technologies. Two years ago at Hannover Fair in Germany I caught my first glimpse of Festo’s ventures into biomechatronics. At the event, Festo introduced its automated herring gull (a seagull to those of here in the U.S.), which it…

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Explaining the value of automation

With manufacturers investing in automation technologies and training employees to use and maintain them, it’s only natural that company executives would begin to ask what the value of all of this technology really is. Automation World’s David Greenfield asks the question, “As someone who’s responsible for automation at your company, do you know how the…

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