GERMANY, Frankfurt. Announced some five years ago, the revolution to be initiated by Industry 4.0 has failed to materialise so far. Instead, it appears that the digital transformation is taking place in numerous small evolutionary steps.
The direction being taken is already shown by a wide range of applications from the fields of product and processes monitoring, labelling technology, packaging, distribution, logic, servicing and maintenance.
Industry 4.0 needs innumerable IP addresses
In future, machines and plant will not only supply independent information about the condition of all important processes and systems but also communicate with each other and intervene in production processes to correct and optimise them without any human input. This calls for innumerable interlinked high-performance sensors to monitor product, machine and process data.
However, the previous internet protocol, IPv4, cannot supply the huge number of IP addresses required for this. Therefore, the most urgent task is the rapid conversion to the new internet standard, IPv6, which is capable of providing an almost infinite number of IP addresses for sensors, devices, machinery and plant. This changeover is currently taking place all around the globe.
Networked sensors are the key
Sensors with direct or wireless network connections, as well as data loggers, are increasingly being used for measuring the temperature, humidity, viscosity, electricity consumption, torque, pressure, material flow, weight, etc., whereby RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology stands out in this connection.
RFID tags exchange information and signals wirelessly with the read/write devices of the various processing machines and the transport, refrigeration and storage systems. Integrated into everything from slaughtering hooks and transport cradles to containers, E2 meat crates or packaging, they can control machinery and plant.
The next IFFA
opens its doors in Frankfurt am Main from 7 to 12 May 2016. There, trade visitors have the opportunity to gather in-depth information about networking machines and processes using modern information, sensor and control technology in accordance with the principles of Industry 4.0. Around 960 exhibitors from 47 countries, including all market leaders, will present their innovations along the entire process chain of the meat industry.
Source: Messe Frankfurt