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PP offer ‘smart’ insight into the factories of the future

More than 20 machine builders and manufacturers were given an insight into how modern manufacturing could look as part of the latest interactive workshop by PP Control & Automation.

Smart Machines for the Future’, which was hosted at the company’s 5,500 sq metre facility in the West Midlands, featured a day of exciting talks on Industry 4.0, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT) and Virtual Reality.

Delegates – including, Mazak, Winbro, Inca Digital, ASMPT DEK and GKN Wheels and Structures – also had the opportunity to see a firsthand demonstration of collaborative robots from Comau and the increasing role they can play in securing greater process efficiencies.

“There has been a lot of talk about Smart Factories, but very few people actually fully understand the concept, and more importantly, what it will involve for manufacturers in all parts of the supply chain,” explained John Armstrong, Sales Director of PP Control & Automation.

“We wanted to help change that by offering a detailed insight into what it could look like on the shop floor, and the only way we could do this was by assembling some of our technical partners who are experts in their field.”

He continued: “It appeared to be a line-up that really worked, with some delegates confirming that, as OEMs, they are being driven by their customers to provide not only highly automated, but connected machines that can drive productivity and achieve the agility required.”

The Smart Machines for the Future event also featured the following talks:

David Evans, Operations Manager (UK) for Heller Machine Tools, added his support for the seminar:

“This was my first technical seminar at PP Control & Automation and I was very impressed. It was a very topical issue to address and certainly gave me a deeper insight into how Industry 4.0 and its different facets could have a positive impact on what we do as a CNC machine tool manufacturer.

“The line-up of presenters provoked a lot of debate around collaborative robots, how automation is being taken to the next level and how Industry 4.0 can be used within electric cabinet/components.”

He continued: “I’ve definitely taken a lot of useful information away, which I’ll share with my colleagues at Heller Machine Tools.”

PP Control & Automation, which is a member of the Manufacturing Assembly Network (MAN), has become one of the world’s largest and most respected suppliers of electrical control systems, cable harnesses and sub-contract manufacturing solutions.

It has recently completed a £1m extension to its state-of-the-art manufacturing plant, creating an additional 1000 sq metres of production space to facilitate growth in new technology markets and satisfy interest from a wider international customer base.

John concluded: “As part of the event, we also gave delegates a guided tour of the factory and many of them admitted they didn’t realise the scale of our operations, and how our unique manufacturing solutions and processes, that are individually tailored to an OEM’s needs, can really assist in driving their growth and profitability.”

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