The Future of Manufacturing: Four Trends Shaping the Industry

Applications of AI

Innovation is at the heart of manufacturing, building economic capacity, strengthening the workforce, and creating opportunity and growth. Today, the industry is undergoing his once-in-a-century transformation driven by changing consumer demands, labor challenges, supply chain disruptions, technological advances and sustainability demands. We’ve come a long way since the Industrial Revolution, but the industry has evolved into a more complex place.

To explore these challenges and opportunities, we join world leaders and colleagues at Hannover Messe, the world’s largest trade fair for industrial technology. As we enter this week of innovation, he explores four key areas that are reshaping the future of manufacturing. Empowering a connected workforce, accelerating intelligent engineering and factories with the industrial metaverse, building agile supply chains, and accelerating sustainability. Powering these trends is artificial intelligence (AI), which offers the industry unprecedented opportunities.

Here, we explore how Microsoft is enabling these four trends to move the industry forward.

Empowering the Connected Worker

A connected workforce is critical to supporting intelligent factories, with 63% of frontline manufacturing workers looking to job opportunities created by technology. From the front office to the factory floor, Microsoft solutions can improve operations by streamlining day-to-day operations, increasing efficiency, safety and productivity, as well as helping develop engaged employees. increase.

We build solutions that address the unique challenges facing manufacturers by streamlining frontline operations, enhancing communication and collaboration, improving employee experience, and enhancing security across shared devices. .

Today we are sharing new features and updates for employees. This includes:

  • Native integration of AI-powered Power Virtual Agents (PVA) into Power Apps is currently in public preview. AI-infused virtual agents are now readily available in Power Apps, enabling frontline manufacturing workers to easily find intelligent answers within the context of manufacturing applications.
  • Leverage Teams as your calling solution to connect with teammates, customers, and suppliers. Later this year, factory floor workers will be able to use shared mobile Android phones to make and receive phone calls wherever they are.

To learn more about how to empower today’s manufacturing workforce, read our latest Microsoft 365 blog.

Building resilient and agile supply chains

Supply chain disruptions are nothing new. But its complexity and rate of change have outstripped the organization’s ability to address the issue. Manufacturers are under pressure to prevent and minimize disruptions, resulting in nearly 90% of supply chain professionals wanting to invest in ways to make their supply chains more resilient. are planning

To support our customers, Microsoft offers solutions such as our Supply Chain Platform and Supply Chain Center. This enables organizations to de-risk across complex supply chains and provide a ready-made “command center”. craft heinz, to meet your unique needs without replacing your current system. Additionally, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Copilot uses generative AI to provide companies with real-time predictive insights across materials, inventory, distribution networks, and more. This means that potential disruptions can be avoided before they occur.

Today, Microsoft is working with customers to improve supply chain resilience.semiconductor company ST Microelectronics Transformed supply chain, advanced R&D, and large-scale manufacturing with Microsoft Azure HPC. He will be able to bring products to market faster and double his production capacity by 2025, while being carbon neutral by 2027. Toyota Material Handling Europe brings warehouse automation to Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management, achieving increased efficiency and productivity with automated guided vehicles that can perform repetitive tasks quickly and accurately. This robotics technology helps manage inventory levels, improving inventory management and reducing storage costs.

Learn more about supply chain solutions from the Dynamics365 team in this blog.

Airplane flying over cargo ship full of boxes

Bringing Humans and AI Together: The Next Generation of Intelligent Engineering and Factories with an Industrial Metaverse

One of the most significant changes in manufacturing is the rise of the intelligent factory. Imagine an industrial ecosystem connected to a common virtual space that allows everyone to visualize and interact with complex processes in real time using real-world data. Built on foundational technologies such as AI, digital twins, mixed reality, ML, and cloud-to-edge, the industrial metaverse will deliver immediate value through remote operations and skills, AI process and asset optimization, and robotics. is changing the way companies operate and manage their businesses. , automation, and autonomous operations.

Similarly, the industrial metaverse is creating new opportunities to make product engineering more collaborative and immersive. This enables manufacturers to reduce and accelerate time to market in an increasingly competitive environment.

Our commitment to immersive experiences to support makers and frontline workers follows today’s announcement of bringing Windows 11 to HoloLens 2, providing enhanced security and modern tools for developers. We are also launching new updates for Dynamics 365 Guides. This includes the ability to annotate anything within reach, a custom security feature called “restricted mode” that gives organizations more control over mixed reality apps, and a new Teams update that calls within Guides. It is included. Improve user experience.

siemens uses generative AI to help industrial companies drive innovation and efficiency across the product design, engineering, manufacturing, and operational lifecycles. This brings Teamcenter apps to Microsoft Teams that leverage the language model of the Azure OpenAI Service to enhance cross-functional collaboration. Additionally, at Hannover Messe, see how assistants powered by Azure AI services enhance code creation, optimization, and debugging of software for factory automation and visual quality inspection on the shop floor using industrial AI. demonstrates how to enable Rockwell Integrates robotics and AI technologies to help companies optimize field service workers and asset management in factories. NVIDIA’s Omniverse Cloud makes it easy to digitize workflows, from design and engineering to frontline workers, from building digital twins of factories to running closed-loop simulations.

Factory worker using HoloLens 2 to complete a task

Sustainability, energy optimization and fuel cell innovation are more important than ever

Sustainability involves adopting environmentally friendly practices such as using renewable energy sources, adopting circular economy principles to reduce waste, and optimizing production processes to minimize environmental impact. , is a top priority for manufacturers implementing the initiative.

Through technologies like Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability and our rich partner ecosystem, we are building a critical foundation for an energy efficient and sustainable future. Seeq Corporation this week announced the Seeq solution for Microsoft Sustainability Manager. It enables teams to integrate time-series process data preparation, analysis, and continuous improvement to reduce the environmental impact of process industry operations.

Many of society’s toughest sustainability problems are chemistry and materials science problems that will ultimately require solutions to scaled quantum machines. However, given the continual increase in classical computing power, state-of-the-art cloud services can now be used to solve more quantum chemistry problems. Johnson Mattheyis a global leader in sustainable technology, collaborating with Microsoft’s Azure Quantum chemists to develop new predictive modeling tools with the supercomputing capabilities and sophisticated workflows of Azure HPC to power chemical simulations. Accelerate, explore the possibilities of AI, and make it quantum ready.

Many manufacturers are facing the urgency of rising energy costs on their factory floors and production plants. Therefore, we work with our partners and customers to prioritize key use cases that help manufacturers visualize and triage where energy losses are occurring. Resolve issues through targeted assessment.

These are some of the exciting innovations happening today that will help build a stronger, more resilient and more sustainable tomorrow.

We look forward to seeing many of you at the Hannover Messe next week.

Tags: AI, Hannover Messe 2023, HoloLens 2, Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Copilot

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