What is Factory Automation?
Factory Automation or Industrial Automation is the use of various control systems for operating machinery in factories with minimal or reduced human intervention. Today, Factory Automation is transitioning to its 4th revolution commonly referred to as Industry 4.0 and is therefore a major part of the megatrend of Industrial IoT (IIoT).
Automation has been achieved by various means including mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, electrical, electronic devices and computers, usually in combination. Modern factories typically use all these combined techniques. The benefit of automation includes labour savings, savings in electricity costs, savings in material costs, and improvements to quality, accuracy, and precision.
Traditionally, the purpose of automation has been to increase productivity and to reduce the cost associated with human operators. However, today, the focus of automation has shifted to increasing quality and flexibility in the manufacturing process as well as securing a more environmentally friendly production.
Factory automation sensors
Sensor solutions are a key enabling part of industrial automation, IIoT and Industry 4.0.
Industrial companies are facing increased global competition, with increasingly higher requirements for sustainable production and faster technological development. The key is to digitize the production processes and make them smarter, more flexible, cost-effective, and more environmentally friendly.
Sensors can help secure full control of industrial automation systems with measurement of, for example, position and displacement, thus enabling effective monitoring, predictive maintenance, breakdown prevention, and downtime minimisation – all leading to savings and profit.
ElastiSense sensors for Factory Automation
Our sensor solutions help companies optimize processes and make them as efficient as possible for greater reliability and longevity in industrial automation.
Sensor solutions from ElastiSense are precise and mechanically flexible thanks to our ground-breaking ‘active rubber’ sensor technology. Unlike piston-based displacement sensors, sensors from ElastiSense can measure displacement while tolerating installation and operation misalignments. This is because the core sensing element is made of rubber and thus deformable in all directions. The flexibility of the sensors is perfect for unpredictable manufacturing environments.
Furthermore, displacement sensors from ElastiSense are fully encapsulated, allowing them to endure all sorts of environmental conditions that typically occur in a production facility, including heat, cold and fluids of various sorts. With an ingress protection of IP68, sensors from ElastiSense are completely dust and watertight. The sensors require no special mounting, protection, or cleaning, which helps you reduce costs on installation, operation, and maintenance, compared to other sensor solutions. The design of the sensors is very hygienic, making them optimal for food production facilities or other production facilities where hygiene is important.
All sensor solutions from ElastiSense can be customised to fit your application and control system and provide data in familiar formats accommodating your transformation into Industry 4.0 and IoT in industrial automation.