Panasonic's new "iLNB" enables the entire production line with different venders' equipment to be controlled by one PC simultaneously and improves the productivity towards the realization of a smart factory.
Osaka, Japan - Panasonic Corporation announced today that the company will start to accept orders for its new integrated line management system, called iLNB, for use in electronics manufacturing. In cooperation with Siemens AG, the system makes it possible to improve total productivity of mounting lines, even with other venders' equipment, in the process of placing electronic components on printed-circuit boards. Order-taking will start at Factory Solution Conference 2016 Panasonic hosts from Oct. 26 to 28 in Tokyo.
On factory floors, manufacturing processes have become increasingly complicated, with a single production line handling various products, as customers' needs continue to diversify. To support such increasing demands for customization, manufacturers need to achieve a smart factory to totally optimize manufacturing operations and management.
The key technology to realize a smart factory is to connect various equipment through the Internet of Things (IoT) to link/synchronize them and collect/control data from the equipment in real time for entire production processes. A mounting line, in fact, has a set of equipment from different venders, so that multiple systems are required to control the entire line. Against this background, Panasonic has developed a line controller system to centrally control those mounting lines by combining its mounting line control software and process know-how with the SIMATIC Industrial PCs from Siemens. With this system, one PC can collect information on the entire mounting line operation statuses in real time to control centrally. Furthermore, this system is not only suitable for surface mounting process but also applicable to a variety of manufacturing fields.
■ Integrated Line Management System iLNB
Also, other factors are required for the smart factory implementation, such as higher efficiency for manufacturing with IoT, quick change of production, shorter lead time, and production scheduling for global sites' optimized production. Panasonic will further utilize the strength of its mounting line know-how and the Plant Simulation module in the Tecnomatix® portfolio, also from Siemens, for entire factory optimization to develop "Production Capacity Simulator" (tentative name) that enables simulation of even more complex manufacturing process. The aim is to virtually design optimized production process by calculating the production time for each process, considering the operator work time and the equipment operation loss time.
Both companies will continue cooperating on the controllers and expanding the scope to the network, IT and infrastructure.
■ Production Performance Simulator (Tentative name)
- Note: Siemens and the Siemens logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Siemens AG. Tecnomatix is a trademark or registered trademark of Siemens Product Lifecycle Management Software Inc. or its subsidiaries in the United States and in other countries.