The advantages of cloud computing are immense and, as the implementation of enablers associated with Industry 4.0 (Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Big Data, Internet of Things, Blockchain) continues to advance, even more opportunities to benefit from them will arise. Today, we can highlight the following:
Ultimately, the virtues of cloud computing exist because the client doesn’t have to commit to spending huge amounts of money to invest in capital goods and software that, over time, need to be updated with the subsequent additional cost. Neither do they have to worry about the maintenance of said elements, as they subscribe to a periodical payment which can be canceled at any time. That is, you pay for what you consume.
The most common access mode is what is known as Software as a Service (SaaS), where the supplier directly provides the applications that their users need, as a subscription. Subsequently, using devices like a tablet or a smartphone, the plant can be controlled from anywhere as long as there’s an internet connection, implying flexibility and agility. But, for maximum benefit, adequate tools must be developed.
At Lantek, we have the knowledge and expertise to innovate in terms of the possibilities offered to us by the cloud environment. The R&D team is working on developing applications in the context of what we have called Lantek 360. For example, it has released a tool which is indispensable in the 4.0 ecosystem: Lantek Analytics. Hand in hand with MES, all of the data gathered is stored in the cloud and cross-checked in order to provide solutions in the face of different scenarios. Solutions that, in some cases, are implemented automatically and, in others, are decided by people. The difference is that this process is faster and more intelligent.
In parallel, we’re working on the development of other applications.
Lantek iQuoting is a tool capable of quoting in the cloud without needing MES or ERP contracted. Among some of the possibilities that the system will offer will be, for example, the automatic verification of stock availability and capacities, including the material, production and transport costs in its calculation, as well as the clients’ individual tariffs.
Lantek MetalShop, as its name suggests, is an online metal part shop, for Lantek users’ end clients. At the moment, it only allows quotes to be calculated for 2D parts. The system verifies the parts and then generates, working with iQuoting, the offer.
Lantek Control Panel will allow the data to be viewed and analyzed in real time, showing the current status and availability of the machines, their workload and receiving alerts and notifications regarding changes. This tool will provide a full picture of the plant’s operation.
The key is to offer greater operating possibilities in a maximum-security environment, with structures that are more robust than in house infrastructures. Therefore, the starting point is to accelerate the interoperability of the machines and the productive process with the rest of the management areas by sensorizing them. This is when data analytics solutions can be applied to establish predictive patterns and ensure decisions can be made quickly and accurately.
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