Leo Simonovich’s picture

By: Leo Simonovich

The digital revolution is the key to unlocking a more innovative, sustainable, and connected global economy. This future hinges on transforming the decades-old analogue machines that run the world’s energy and industrial sectors into a hyperconnected network of physical and digital assets—an industrial internet of things (IoT).

For energy and infrastructure companies, industrial IoT opens new horizons. Innovative business models digitally connect physical assets with operational technology (OT) and information technology (IT) to improve efficiency, enhance safety, and optimize operations by leveraging innovative software applications, big data analytics, advanced sensors, and artificial intelligence (AI). But harnessing the power of industrial IoT is about more than any one company’s success. It holds the promise to drive the innovative businesses and professions of tomorrow for communities around the globe.

Multiple Authors
By: Shaina Warner, Anne Corning

Metrology is “the science of measurement, embracing both experimental and theoretical determinations at any level of uncertainty in any field of science and technology,” as defined by the International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM).

Display metrology means using a scientific approach to measure (i.e., quantify) the visual output of a display. The primary output of today’s digital displays is light, which can be measured in terms of a display’s brightness, color, contrast, and other visual qualities.

Spectral power distribution vs. spectral sensitivity

There is more than one approach to quantifying and characterizing a light source, however. We can measure the absolute values of a light’s electromagnetic output, called its spectral power distribution (SPD). The SPD of a light source is typically displayed as a graph that represents the relative intensity of the source at each wavelength.

Knowledge at Wharton’s picture

By: Knowledge at Wharton

After more than a year of being pummeled by pandemic-related supply chain shortages, computer maker HP had some good news to report during its third-quarter earnings call last month. Revenue is up 7 percent over the prior-year period, even though it fell short of projections.

The problem isn’t demand. Chief executive Enrique Lores told Barron’s, “We are selling everything we can produce.” Yet supply chain problems persist, especially across Southeast Asia where many factories have been forced into Covid-19 lockdowns.

“We could have grown more if it wasn’t for the shortage of components,” Lores said.

Although well past the initial shock wave of the pandemic, industries across the spectrum are still grappling with ripple effects that threaten to sink profitability. Gad Allon, Wharton professor of operations, information, and decisions, said now is the time for business leaders to rethink their reliance on China as the main supplier for everything from computer chips to shoes.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

This article contends that we should replace “quality” with “value” to address an enormous array of previously unaddressed risks and opportunities. Poor quality is only one of the Toyota Production System’s seven wastes, and it is rarely the most costly one because it is also the only waste to draw attention followed by corrective and preventive action. The other wastes can hide in plain view for literally hundreds of years (as proven by brick laying) and are present 100 percent of the time as they are built into the job. Even the Toyota Production System’s seven wastes do not encompass all potential wastes.

It might even be instructive to say “value management” instead of “quality management,” and “value engineering” instead of “quality engineering.” The U.S. General Services Administration already defines value engineering as “... achieving essential functions at the lowest life cycle cost consistent with required performance, quality, reliability, and safety.” Investopedia defines value as the “ratio of function to cost.” This article will define it as the ratio of utility (i.e., what we can do with the product or service) to its overall cost.

Value = Utility/Cost

Sara Adams’s picture

By: Sara Adams

At Greenlight Guru, we collectively have hundreds of years of experience in medical device quality management. We’ve all seen some great successes during our time in the industry—high-quality medical devices that improved the quality of life for countless people around the world. But we’ve also seen plenty of mistakes, especially when it comes to quality.

Not only have we seen actions (or inactions) that contravene industry standards, but we’ve also encountered issues that have the potential to undermine a company’s success entirely.

Quality management is the cornerstone of medical device manufacturing. There is simply no way to overstate how essential quality is to bring a medical device to market and keep it there long term.

So, let’s take a look at the five biggest quality mistakes we see medical device manufacturers making and how you can avoid them.

1. Conducting infrequent management reviews

How close is your management team to the inner workings of your quality management system (QMS)?

Stavros Karamperidis’s picture

By: Stavros Karamperidis

Ningbo-Zhousan may not exactly be a household name, but find something in your house made in China, and it’s quite likely it was delivered from there. Ningbo-Zhousan, which overlooks the East China Sea some 200 km south of Shanghai, is China’s second-busiest port, handling the equivalent of some 29 million 20-foot containers every year.

At the time of writing, the port has more than 50 ships waiting to dock. This is because the Ningbo-Meishan terminal, which handles about one-fifth of the port’s total volumes, has been closed for a week after a member of staff tested positive for Covid. With still no word of a reopening, many more ships have diverted to alternative ports.

Torsten Schimanski’s picture

By: Torsten Schimanski

The manufacturing skills gap has been a topic of discussion for several years. According to a 2021 Deloitte study, it is estimated that by 2030, there will be 2.1 million manufacturing jobs that will need to be filled. Finding employees who are trained, skilled workers is becoming more critical in a post-pandemic world, and meeting this demand is requiring manufacturers to begin thinking outside the box when it comes to future labor force planning.

As technology in the manufacturing industry continues to move forward, and career manufacturers begin to retire out, it is also becoming apparent that the skills required for success are growing more complex. Manufacturers that have participated in apprenticeship programs are taking control of the skills gap and labor deficit while also setting themselves up for success in the future.

Eliot Dratch’s picture

By: Eliot Dratch

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an independent, nongovernmental, international organization that develops standards to ensure the quality, safety, and efficiency of products, services, and systems. As technology continues to rapidly develop, new standards are drafted and implemented by people at all levels within global industries.

The ISO 9000 family of standards pertains to quality management systems in any industry; read on to learn more about ISO 9004 and how it can benefit your manufacturing organization.

What is the ISO 9004 standard?

ISO 9004:2018 gives guidelines for enhancing an organization’s ability to achieve sustained success, which is consistent with the quality management principles given in the standards included in ISO 9000:2015. ISO 9004 provides a self-assessment tool to review the extent to which the organization has adopted the concepts within the ISO 9000 group. Also, ISO 9004:2018 is applicable to any organization, regardless of its size, type, and activity.

Andrew Maynard’s picture

By: Andrew Maynard

Elon Musk announced a humanoid robot designed to help with those repetitive, boring tasks people hate doing. Musk suggested it could run to the grocery store for you, but presumably it would handle any number of tasks involving manual labor.

Predictably, social media immediately filled with references to a string of dystopian sci-fi movies about robots where everything goes horribly wrong.

As troubling as the robot futures in movies like I, Robot, The Terminator, and others are, it’s the underlying technologies of real humanoid robots—and the intent behind them—that should be cause for concern.

Musk’s robot is being developed by Tesla. It’s a seeming departure from the company’s car-making business, until you consider that Tesla isn’t a typical automotive manufacturer. The so-called “Tesla Bot” is a concept for a sleek, 125-pound humanlike robot that will incorporate Tesla’s automotive artificial intelligence and autopilot technologies to plan and follow routes, navigate traffic—in this case, pedestrians—and avoid obstacles.

Lauren Dunford’s picture

By: Lauren Dunford

Manufacturing is stepping up investment as the U.S. economy recovers from the challenges of 2020. Nearly 40 percent of manufacturers have increased CapEx spending, with less than 7 percent planning to spend less, the National Association of Manufacturers reports.

With that investment, factories have substantial room to reduce waste and improve profitability. In many plants the key efficiency metric, overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), stands at just 60 percent—meaning 40 percent of potential production capability is lost. In contrast, state-of-the-art factories regularly achieve 85 percent OEE.

Getting to real-time insight

Digital tools can be an important lever to help factories and entire manufacturing ecosystems dramatically reduce waste. As a foundation, most digital technologies start by providing real-time insight into what’s going on, what’s going wrong, and why. With that information, operators can act more quickly to fix issues as they occur and even prevent problems.

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