Manufacturers wanting to gain real-time visibility of production operations to increase throughput, improve quality control and achieve a smarter workflow, now have an integrated portfolio of real-time location systems (RTLS) at their disposal. Ubisense, a world leader in location-aware technology, today announced the availability of its Manufacturing Solution Suite, a comprehensive collection of software applications that leverage location information to precisely pinpoint critical assets moving through complex production environments.
Employing ultra-wideband (UWB) technology to identify items to within a meter or less, the Ubisense Manufacturing Solution Suite includes three complimentary applications. Each has been designed to produce real-time, easy-to-interpret data that can help counter common manufacturing issues – for example, bottlenecks that hinder productivity and result in defects and extra work. Used together or independently, the applications provide unequalled information about current and past production flow to support lean manufacturing goals, deliver new efficiencies, improve quality, and aid overall compliance and reporting.
"Any manufacturing process is a complex interplay of moving objects: parts, sub-assemblies, people and tools- all coming together at the right time and place to perform steps in a defined sequence. Keeping track of production processes means precisely monitoring all moving elements that could possibly cause a deviation from plan," said Adrian Jennings, vice president of technology, Ubisense. "But identifying, locating and monitoring the movement of important items does not immediately guarantee value – which is where the Ubisense Manufacturing Solution Suite comes in. Our RTLS solutions turn location information into actionable business intelligence that helps manufacturers optimize processes, achieve new operational efficiencies, and meet higher quality and standards."
The Ubisense Manufacturing Solution Suite includes the following location-based products:
Asset Manager provides a management portal into an organization, keeping track of critical assets. It helps customers find misplaced items quickly, streamline audits, optimize parts delivery and even monitor production flow to support continual improvement initiatives. An intuitive, map-based portal offers quick access to critical information and integrates seamlessly with existing enterprise solutions.
Visible Industrial Process (VIP) extends location visibility into detailed process monitoring. VIP helps to monitor production, creating alerts about any deviations from plan that may cause delivery issues. Additionally, a rich set of simple-to-interpret reports offers real-time analysis of operational efficiency to optimize production flow. Facility- and process-oriented views provide a single command center from which to monitor production processes spanning multiple workstations, multiple facilities and even multiple countries.
Assembly Control System (ACS) extends location visibility into real-time equipment control. ACS enables and disables devices such as tools to provide on-the-fly error-proofing with very high reliability. ACS matches parts and tools, only allowing assembly operations that are authorized and safe. Since tool operation zones are defined in software and commands are transmitted wirelessly, ACS provides freedom from physical tethers and allows rapid line reconfiguration.
"Some of the world’s biggest, most intensive production facilities use our manufacturing solutions, such as Caterpillar, Aston Martin and Airbus," said Jennings. "But it’s important to note that our solutions work equally well across a spectrum of manufacturing environments. From single tool scenarios to global process monitoring, our location solutions deliver the same benefits – real-time visibility and precise control."