IoT and control software in the manufacturing industry

Known as the fourth industrial revolution and often referred to as Industry 4.0, this concept embraces a broad variety of digital tools, software solutions and interconnected machinery, generally defined as IoT, the Internet of Things. This is the foundation upon which industry in general has created Smart Factories, in which automation, connectivity and Artificial Intelligence play a key role.

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IoT solutions

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What is meant by the Internet of Things?

IoT is a network of physical elements or machines featuring sensors which are all connected via internet and which are able to communicate with one another.

The machines are able to collect data, connect with other machinery and share the data over a network without the need for human intervention. Statistics, historical data, but also information gathered in real time via strategically placed sensors contribute to optimising production lines and the exchange of key data with a company’s ERP leads to additional benefits for the business. These may include timely maintenance, cost reductions, faster time-to-market and ultimately increased profitability.


What are the benefits of IoT solutions in the finishing industry?

Starting with digital simulation tools, we are able to pinpoint critical issues that may arise and eliminate them before finalising the design of a finishing line. Subsequently, we can provide the necessary software to boost production efficiency, monitor production batches remotely or single pieces as they transit different line sections. Predictive and preventive maintenance capabilities help companies avoid unwanted or unnecessary downtime and with the help of special devices, remote support can be provided exploiting the potential of augmented reality.

Key benefits at a glance:

Optimised line design

Evaluating factory space, ergonomic issues and production rhythms, a simulation software can determine how and where to overcome potential bottlenecks.

Increased production efficiency

Calculating batch processing times with monitoring software, real-time intervention will improve production efficiency almost immediately.

Consumption and cost reduction

Keeping production runs under control and monitoring lacquer or energy consumption helps to reduce costs and increase profitability. 

Maximum uptime

Predictive maintenance software solutions and remote training using VR devices maintain equipment health and minimise downtime.

In which industries are IoT solutions used?

Control software for finishing lines and IoT solutions are found mostly in industries where the finishing process is articulated and lines are made up of several different machines:

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Which control software for finishing lines are available?

We have created a selection of digital tools and web-based applications to simulate, track, manage and optimise production. Each has a specific purpose and can be used independently of one another. The following solutions are designed to supervise and manage a line from a single point, obtain realistic data regarding productivity, control the equipment, improve efficiency and performance, and optimise maintenance tasks.

A digital simulation tool, cCloner takes care of line layout and evaluates lacquer, thermal and electrical energy consumption.  By assessing processing times based on a simulation of the production process, this software helps pinpoint potentially critical issues and calculates the overall coated surface area handled on a single line, enabling you to invest with far fewer risks.

Tracks and monitors production from one single point, enabling users to adapt production parameters to handle new thicknesses and colours on the fly. Used together with cLink, data is gathered and fed to and from a company’s management software to optimise production and consumption.

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A web-based application providing immediate access to machine/line data from all over the world, at any time of the day and from any device connected to the internet (PC/tablet/Smartphone). 

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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

01 What does digitizing my factory mean?
Firstly, digitizing your factory means converting production processes by moving away from traditional systems towards highly automated, interconnected ones that also act as a rich data source. As we see it, this digitization makes sense if it allows your company to remain competitive, cut costs and maximise profits.
02 What data is available to me? What do I need it for?
The available data ranges from traceability data - stored by our cTracker line supervisor which saves all events, alarms and plant parameters, associating them with production batches - to detailed data on individual machines (telemetry) and the production statistics managed by our IoT product, cMaster.
03 Can my competitors see my data?
Absolutely not! We use commercially available, secure, certified remote assistance software. Security assessments carried out together with our specialised partners ensure top-grade data confidentiality. They also ensure the data is readily available and safely stored.
04 Can machine downtimes be predicted?
There are several ongoing projects concerning analysis of the data collected by our Ubiquo software tools. The goal is to anticipate any problems and provide services that are both predictive and proactive:
- to improve performance
- to prevent finishing line breakdowns and stops
- to reduce spare part and finished product stocks.
05 How can I know whether the coating system will cause problems after assembly?
Our unique know-how allows us to process all operational data and extrapolate from it the tasks needed to pro-actively improve the output of coating processes and ensure their stability and repeatability.  Note also that our extensive experience in the field gives our solutions exceptional efficiency.
06 Is there something that allows me to monitor my coating process?
Of course. At all times cTracker, our line supervisor, lets you:
- set up and check the entire line from a single point
- trace workpieces on the line
- export alarms/production reports
- exchange information with your internal company systems.
07 How can I know whether the production process is working properly?
Our line supervisor, cTracker, provides you with an OEE/KPI section that lets you monitor line capacity and productivity. And you're not alone! We provide customers with expert technical support both locally and globally. A far-reaching network of branches, agents and affiliates provides authorised, highly qualified technical assistance. We also provide remote assistance by providing immediate answers to on-line questions, thus ensuring real-time situation monitoring and accurate diagnostics as regards both technical aspects and the process.
08 How can I get an overview of the whole line from a single point?
Our cTracker line supervisor has been specifically designed to control our machines from a single point on the line. In fact, on large-scale lines with multiple machines, it would be unthinkable to manage production changeovers and modify parameters or work recipes via the control panels on each individual machine. That's why the cTracker solution manages everything via a single screen at the beginning of the line.
09 How can I simulate my production process?
Simulation is a valuable tool, hence the introduction of a pre-sales service called cCloner. More specifically, this line simulator can:
- show a realistic 3D configuration of the line layout: a sound, reliable picture made up of measurements, 3D imaging and objective data.
- provide accurate line operation simulation: to prevent problems, avoid machine downtimes and have more general information right from the design stage.
- simulate real productivity and consumption: finding the best configuration gives you a realistic forecast of the situation, also in terms of productivity and energy/heat consumption.
10 Is there a plant maintenance planning tool?
The IoT cMaster tool features a Maintenance section where you're offered maintenance services, grouped by function. The software manages scheduling and reminds you of deadlines according to actual machine running times.