IIoT Framework for SME level Injection Molding Industry in the Context of Industry 4.0
Keywords:Industry 4.0, Internet of Things (IoT), Industrial IoT, IoT for SMEs
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a hype topic for nearly a decade now. Broadly growing, millions of devices get direct access to the Internet provides plenty of applications such as smart homes or mobile health management. This trend can also be found in the industry where IoT components hardened for these environments are introduced, called Industrial IoT (IIoT) devices which can be either sensors or actors, as well as mobile equipment such as smartphones, tablets, and smart glasses. Consequently, mobile communication becomes universal in smart factories. IIoT devices provide massive data on temperature, pressure, machine states, etc. But still, most of the SME level industries in the Asian region are new to these technological advancements. They still operate their facilities ith conventional setups without absorbing the new opportunities which are presented by IoT.
In the plastic injection molding industry, process parameters perform a significant role in the quality of the output product. During the manufacturing process, these process parameters have to deal with various factors such as quality and type of materials, requirement tolerance levels of the output product, Environmental conditions like temperature and humidity, etc. Injection molding has been a challenging process for many SME level manufacturers to produce products while meeting the quality requirements at the lowest cost. Most of them are unable to reach the global market in the injection molding industry due to the non-availability of the proper methods to determine the process parameters for injection molding. During production, quality characteristics may differ due to drifting or shifting of processing conditions caused by machine wear, environmental change, or operator fatigue. By determining the optimal process parameter settings productivity and quality will increase while reducing the cost of production.
In this paper, we suggest an Industrial IoT framework that can develop for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) level industries to optimize their production facility. With the presented framework SME level industries can start to inherit IoT devices into their production floor to manage and monitor production parameters in real-time while improving the quality of the production.