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Assembly plant

The software and hardware platform kSense can be used at assembly plants (AP) to improve performance by analyzing the operating modes of assembly machines and the conditions of assembly operations. The platform will enable assembly plant owners and managers to have automatic control over:

  • Assembly speed;
  • The condition of assembly machines;
  • Product quality;
  • Personnel movement patterns;
  • Component movement patterns;
  • The exact time spent on manufacturing activities and whether or not they comply with the process charts;
  • Maintenance needs;
  • The optimum climate conditions on the plant's premises;
  • The actual time it takes to reorganize production in order to commence the manufacturing of a new product.

This list may be extended upon the customer's request.

The platform comprises the following equipment:

For the platform to work, the above mentioned units need to be installed on the AP premises first, after which data collection can commence, followed by its transmission to the kBrain module hosted on the server. In the absence of a local server, the data can be processed in Microsoft Azure or a similar cloud service. This requires that the facility be equipped with a communication channel that transfers data at a rate of at least 2 Mbps.
Video cameras for specific control areas (the assembly zone, back rooms, component storage, finished product storage, outdoor video surveillance). If a video surveillance system is already in place, kSense will integrate with it and process the video stream with H.263, H.264, H.265, MPEG codecs;
The kHUB subsystem which collects data, connects with on-site systems and conducts the primary analysis of video streams;
Temperature sensors and humidity sensors (outside the AP and within the monitored areas);
Light intensity sensors (these come as a set with motion sensors);
Interface units to monitor the AP's production equipment;
Meter interface unit for monitoring electricity, water and heat consumption.

This list may be extended upon the customer's request.

The on-premise kHUB subsystem accumulates sensor data and video stream data and exchanges information with the platform's cloud components. The data is encrypted and transferred to the platform's server/cloud subsystem. A mathematical model processes the data and produces a set of controllable parameters to find an efficient way to improve the surveyed facility's performance and to provide forecasts.

After the data has been processed and analyzed, kHub receives the reports required for analysis and, if necessary, a set of instructions to automatically optimize the assembly plant's systems.

Solution architecture:

  • kFace
  • kBrain
  • kHUB
    • Utility infrastructure
    • AP software systems
    • Actuating devices
    • Sensors
    • Video cameras
    • Display

Defining AP efficiency and further development options

The facility's performance is assessed by kBrain, the platform's compute kernel which processes the data it receives from kHUB. Two embedded systems a predictive analytics system and an expert system carry out real-time data analysis and time series statistical analysis. Having analyzed the data derived from video analytics and quality control systems, the movement patterns of personnel, the condition of assembly machines, and the resources exploited, the platform automatically performs as follows:

  • Identifies factors that prevent the assembly equipment package from operating with maximum efficiency;
  • Generates a set of recommendations on how to improve personnel efficiency;
  • Identifies factors that affect product quality;
  • Generates a set of recommendations on how to improve AP efficiency;
  • Maintains the optimum operating conditions for utility systems and the assembly zone, i.e. the temperature, lighting and humidity;
  • Monitors assembly machines to identify deterioration symptoms early and to initiate maintenance;
  • Creates optimum work load charts for every type of assembly equipment;
  • Optimizes the movement patterns of personnel in the assembly process, and component logistics.

To optimize staff work, the platform generates individual recommendations. The recommendations and other background information is displayed on wearable devices or on additional work zone monitors.

Presenting results

kFace is the platform's interface subsystem. The results of the data processing are displayed via dashboards pre-grouped in kFace. The results can be easily uploaded to the AP software-based accounting systems.

Summary

The kSense platform will help boost the assembly plant's efficiency by 30-50%.