Produce your product better, faster and easier
IMS Pre-automation analysis
IMS’s R&D team supports you in reaching your production goals
To align the results of production automation with your production goals, we think along with you and your team at an early stage in the cooperation. Our R&D department is involved in research for and analysis of existing technologies and processes and how these can be effectively integrated into a production line. They actively co-develop processes together with the customers’ experts. Our R&D builds on extensive knowledge in the fields of process automation and process integration. For a pre-automation analysis we team up with your experts to brainstorm and create a shared production roadmap: what are the biggest challenges, and how can we solve them?
How do we help you solve your manufacturing challenge?
This means that on request or if found necessary, we support you with further analysis of the manufacturing processes. In this pre-automation analysis we assess and unravel the challenging manufacturing issues at hand and come up with effective measures. Together, we agree on the path to proceed. We typically use a proof of concept approach to prove the well-designed functionality before applying it in the machine.
The learnings that come out of this pre-automation analysis will end up in our central knowledge base for the optimization of process integration in our projects. This generic knowledge is implemented in customer projects and will be updated as we proceed. We handle all information and knowledge with care. This means we will not share any exclusive customer or supplier knowledge and/or IP with other parties. This strategy of knowledge sharing will ensure that valuable, generic knowledge is being shared within the company and can be revisited repeatedly.
The pre-automation analysis runs concurrent with the development of an automated production line.
What is done in a pre-automation analysis phase?
We start with a definition of the scope and requirements. These follow from the user requirements specification and are collected in a functional design specification (FDS).
Then we conduct a preliminary study to come up with a proposal for production processes integration. We identify the necessary process steps and subsequently assess the manufacturability of the products with these processes.
Then we take the most challenging processes and perform a Proof of Concept (POC). With a demo setup, a simulated model or a prototype, we test and prove the well-designed functionality before we apply it in the new machine.
The result of this phase is a clear project definition.
In the pre-automation analysis phase, we closely work together with our system architects. The development of your production line is done in parallel with several steps of the pre-automation analysis phase. This makes it possible to implement results from the analysis rapidly and efficiently to optimize the process integration and the production line.
Our working method is based on the Rapid Learning Cycles technique. The Rapid learning cycles technique consist of synchronized sets of experiments to eliminate uncertainties, manage risks and build knowledge before important decisions within a product or process development project can be taken.
It builds on two basic guidelines: learn first to identify and remove obstacles and push decisions later to preserve flexibility.
Complementing our production automation knowledge
Knowledge development and innovation are amongst IMS’s core competencies. Our R&D department continuously conducts research into new production technologies. Besides our own research, we have joined forces with the experts from the University of Twente, the German Fraunhofer Institute and a number of other innovation partners across the world. This enables creative problem solving and increases the quality of our work and the production lines we develop and build.