What is Industrial Automation?
Industrial automation deals primarily with the automation of manufacturing, quality control and material handling processes. Industrial automation is the use of mechanized equipment and logical programming commands to handle processes and machineries in an industry, and replacing the decision making of humans and manual command-response activities.
Why Industrial Automation?
Energy efficiency in industrial processes has become a high priority in the modern world. While the earlier purpose of industrial automation was to increase productivity and reduce the cost associated with human operators, today the focus of industrial automation is to increase quality and flexibility in a manufacturing process. For example, In the automobile industry, the installation of pistons into the engine used to be performed manually with an error rate of 1-1.5%. Presently, this task is performed using automated machinery with an error rate of 0.00001%.
Advantages of Industrial Automation
There are several advantages to employing an industrial automation strategy. In manufacturing, the main benefits of automation include leaner operation processes that require less energy, less material and reduced labor waste. These can lead to improvements in quality, accuracy and precision.
Industrial automation improves production through a better control of production. It helps produce mass production by drastically reducing the assembly time per product, with a greater production quality. For a given labor input, industrial automation produces a large amount of output.
Provides Optimum Cost of Operation
Integration of industrial automation minimizes cycle times and effort, therefore the need of human labor is reduced. The investment on employees is saved with automation technology.
Improves Product Quality
Since industrial automation reduces human involvement, the possibility of human errors is eliminated. Uniformity and product quality can be maintained with industrial automation by adaptively controlling and monitoring the industrial processes in all stages—from the inception of a product to an end product.
Reduces Routine Checks
Industrial automation completely reduces the need for manual checking of various process parameters. By taking advantage of automation technologies, industrial automation has the ability to automatically adjust process variables to set or desired values.
Raises the Level of Safety
Industrial Automation increases the level of safety to personnel with the substitution of robotic devices in hazardous working conditions.
Industrial automation has recently found more and more acceptance from various industries because of its huge benefits, such as, increased productivity, quality and safety at low costs.