A smart factory is a highly digitalized production facility that connects with the smart way of manufacturing. It is considered to be the future factory type and is presently in its infancy stage. It is one of the useful outcomes of the fourth industrial revolution.
Smart factory or Industry 4.0 is used up by the manufacturing companies for employing technology such as robotics, analytics, artificial intelligence, big data, and many other features that could run by itself.
Characteristics of the Smart Factory
In this fast-moving era, people wish to make use of technologies that could handle their work with ease. This helps such a factory to work with improved visibility, transparency, connectivity, and autonomous features. Every factory enjoys the automation features which come up with many advantages. However, this smart factory helps in taking the concept to the next higher level. They carry the ability to run on their own and do not require any intervention from the human part. By making use of the technologies, these smart factories can easily learn to adapt as per the real-time requirement enabling the factory to work with improved flexibility levels.
Benefits and challenges faced by the Smart Factory
The time required for decision making is very quick in the smart factory. It is known for its improved connectedness. The sensor linked to the devices, machines, and systems helps in providing data which is used for real-time decision making. Even it bears the ability to self-correct itself when required and send an alert if required for the human intervention. All the issues generated even could be addressed proactively. Therefore, versions of such smart factories are already set, and the adopters have started exploring and making use of it.
However, at the same time, it is even facing various challenges that are blocking its adoption to a widespread level. Data integration is considered to be the primary challenge. Hence, to create the ideal network by connecting all the manufacturing and digital supplies, these factories need to deal with the massive quantity of data from the different components. Robots are soon expected to come in and populate these smart factories. Therefore, in the end, even the cost involved in such a factory set up is a matter of concern.