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What if you could offer your customers the luxury of customized products as economically as if they were mass-produced? What if you could use a single solution for everything from design concepts and procurement to manufacturing and delivery. What if you could digitally track your production cycle and use the information to create new services and business models?

What if the possibilities are endless and you could do so much more?

Well, they are. And, you can.

Enter SAP’s latest and coolest Industry 4.0 innovations.

 

Custom products in a flash

The Open Integrated Factory, a co-innovated Digital Manufacturing solution powered by SAP® Leonardo, marries automated technology and enterprise software to provide a customized customer experience by harmonizing robots, printers, transport and quality control systems.

In the Make-to-Order Process scenario, the customer’s order triggers production. Once the order specifications are received a robot arm goes to work kicking off product assembly. The product – let’s say for example, a smart sensor that measures different values of the space you are in, like room temperature – is assembled on demand, complete with personalized inscription and identification number. A chip ID is registered and linked to the product unique identification number.

A camera and product weigh in checks whether any rework is necessary. If these checks are not satisfied the product is passed on for manual rework where a technician fixes the product with the support of 3D instructions, otherwise the product is ready to be put on the shelves.

 

Smart solutions for smart production

But what if a customer’s order is non-standard? Maybe they want every color in the rainbow splattered onto their smart sensor.  In the Engineer-to-Order Process scenario, you can create a non-standard product that can instantly be run through a mostly automated production process.  A technician adds the customer’s nonstandard design preferences to the model and sends the file to a 3D printer.

Once printed, a smart tray acts as an autonomous agent. The tray knows what it is transporting, communicates independently with the workstations, and recognizes which resource is currently free to be selected for the next cycle.

With the help of SAP’s IoT simulator our smart sensor can be monitored at any time. A mobile app provides a real-time view of a range of information, such as humidity, temperature, and more.  You can define your own threshold values and actions based on your needs. If a value, such as ambient temperature, rises over a specific threshold, the app alerts you and provides recommendations.

 

 

Industry 4.0 on wheels

This whole process extending all the way to product delivery becomes connected with SAP Leonardo’s Digital Logistics solution that links your ERP system and supply chain seamlessly. From ordering, planning, picking with smart glasses, and all the way to delivery with sensors tracking transport activity. You can now ensure on-time deliveries or inform customers of unexpected delays immediately with live tracking data.

 

 

Better service for happier customers

By now, you might be wondering about options for improving customer service. Introducing the digital twin who enables constant monitoring, predictive maintenance, and the never-ending improvement of products by creating an exact replica of real machines, their usage and user data. You can draw conclusions from operating data, say hello to performance enhancements and goodbye to unexpected downtime. With Digital Service powered by SAP Leonardo, you can focus on product optimization, use augmented reality (AR) to identify spare parts and manufacture them with 3D printing. Leverage equipment-as-service and predictive maintenance models to spend more time growing your business and less time on customer satisfaction and retention.

“Equipment is becoming more digitized and more connected, establishing networks between machines, humans, and the Internet, leading to the creation of new ecosystems that enable higher productivity, better energy efficiency, and higher profitability. … The IoT has the potential to impact everything from new product opportunities, to shop floor optimization, to factory worker efficiency gains that will power top-line and bottom-line gains.” — Goldman Sachs, in its report The Internet of Things: The Next Mega-Trend.

The world’s leading technology trade fair is just around the corner. From April 24th to 28th the latest worldwide industrial innovations will be showcased at the Hannover Messe. This year, SAP will be featuring six IoT showcases, including those highlighted above. Bonus – you’ll even have the opportunity take a piece of Industry 4.0 back with you with customized smart sensors being made on site.

To find more about SAP’s presence at the Hannover Messe go here.

Click here to discover SAP Leonardo.

Follow me on Twitter @SuzyKim or join me on LinkedIn.

 

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