Renishaw’s new Central manufacturing connectivity and data platform is poised to transform the productivity, capability, and efficiency of manufacturing operations. The new data-driven manufacturing solution brings the power of connectivity to the machine shop floor, resulting in highly efficient, productive operations with optimized processes, reduced downtime and minimized waste.
Renishaw Central collects metrology, status, and alarm data from connected devices across the shop floor. Devices include additive manufacturing (AM) systems, on-machine measurement systems, shop floor gauging, and co-ordinate measuring machines (CMMs). With insight into the process performance of each workstation, manufacturers have a better understanding of where to take corrective measures. In unattended processes, the status of devices can be monitored remotely. If any errors occur, they are detected and displayed within the Central platform’s dashboards or other third-party applications.
“The Renishaw Central concept was born out of our own need to digitalise, visualise and control the manufacturing and measurement processes within our own production facilities. We wanted to reduce assumptions when problem solving, and facilitate the adoption of automated process control,” said Guy Brown, Renishaw Central Development Manager. “Because we live and breathe many of the same challenges faced by our customers, we’re confident that we’ve created a digital solution capable of driving actionable data across machining shop floors everywhere.”
Renishaw has used process automation technologies in the manufacture of its own products for over 30 years. During its in-house design and development, the Renishaw Central platform was deployed at Renishaw’s own UK low-volume high-variety manufacturing facilities. 69 machines were connected to Renishaw Central, and both sites subsequently reported a reduction in unplanned machine downtime caused by automation system stoppages.
“Collaboration with those working directly with Renishaw Central in the machine shop, including production engineers, and maintenance and operations staff, allowed Renishaw to engineer a product that solves real-world problems. Our original aim for Renishaw Central was to introduce further automation for lathes using our IPC technology, and this is progressing well. But an unexpected and positive outcome has been Renishaw Central’s ability to highlight and rank unplanned stoppages of our automation systems,” said Guy. “Analysis of this information has guided remedial actions, leading to a 69% reduction in automation stoppages and significant improvements in utilisation.”
“The platform operates on-premises, allows shop administrators to own their data, and ensures that process control is automated without depending on an internet connection,” said Brandon Golab, Machine Tool Product Manager at Renishaw Inc. “Connectivity, consistency and control drives confidence and, in-turn, the development of future factory concepts.”
A global selection of pilot customers who trialled Renishaw Central also confirmed that access to standardised end-to-end data provided an insight into their processes that has allowed them to improve manufacturing performance.
Renishaw provides solutions for tool setting, broken tool detection, component set-up, in-cycle gauging and first-off component inspection, with automatic offset updates.
For more information: www.renishaw.com