A crucial part in this process is gathering real-time high-quality data from around the factory. Lantek MES Wos has been developed by Lantek to gather key data from the production process. This includes machine status, labour, materials, inventory etc.
In the workshop, Lantek MES Wos also provides all the information about every job that needs to be completed. Information available includes nesting layout, material assigned, stock levels in the warehouse, processes and the machines which are to be used. Feedback from the workshop comes from operator input at shop floor terminals and direct status monitoring on some models of machine tools. With Lantek’s Opentalk communication system, the company is developing the capability to extend this link to all types of machinery. The accurate data gathered makes it possible to make decisions as circumstances change in the workshop based on what is happening at any instant. For example, the machine to be used can be changed, rework to replace damaged parts can be initiated, parts can be nested into remnants of material to maximize utilization and stock levels of both parts and metal sheet can be monitored, closing the loop between what was planned and what actually happened.
By both supplying information to the workshop and collecting data from the shop floor and machinery, Lantek MES Wos is at the heart of the MES system, collecting data from the workshop about machine status. As the capabilities machine tools develop and more of them can link to communication systems such as Lantek Opentalk, detecting when machines start and stop and making decisions based on that information will be fully automated. Lantek has already developed automated production lines for its customers using this technology which typically involve sheet metal stacker/loaders, laser cutting machines and bending machines. With Lantek MES Wos, the system knows when each operation is complete and when it can be automatically passed to the next process. These systems can be very complex with storage, automated handling and tool changing included in the process.
Now, IIoT devices and sensorized machines together with standards in communication protocols are opening up even more possibilities. Already, Lantek is able to generate key indicators for its customers such as OEE and can automatically generate quotations for customers which consider machine availability and historical performance. It can also analyze and manage almost every aspect of a manufacturer’s business including customer behaviour, segmentation and ordering performance. The next stage will be integration with both customers and suppliers through cloud-based communication with multiple software systems and applications.
Building up a supply chain with this technology will give companies long term resilience in their businesses through increased customer and supplier loyalty and partnership working at a deep level.
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