Current technical progress is transforming the industry. Digitalization and artificial intelligence open up new dimensions of automation. A great opportunity for companies to make their processes more efficient and cost-effective.
Efficiency drives innovation
Mechanisation uses machines to facilitate or eliminate physically demanding work, but cutting-edge automation is now also changing the actual processes. Thanks to significant progress in sensor and actuator technology, machines are becoming increasingly smart and today’s automation systems are assuming ever more complex tasks. Virtual prototyping and digital twins – virtual representations of the actual product that accompany it throughout the entire life cycle – make it possible to replace time-consuming processes with cost-saving automated solutions. ERP (enterprise resource planning) and smart monitoring are examples of the far more efficient software-based methods that are increasingly taking care of centralised operations such as production and process control. What’s more, advanced processing technologies are enabling the relevant machines to adapt to changing environmental conditions and even optimise themselves. In Industry 4.0, the entire company can be controlled automatically – a trend that is gathering pace.
There are many different reasons for this. For one thing, customers are asking for ever more product variants of an ever higher quality together with shorter delivery times. For another, companies require new technical systems to respond to the shortage of skilled workers and the increasing pressure on costs in fiercely competitive markets. High levels of automation, more powerful systems and more flexible processes offer future-proof solutions to these challenges. Companies in the electrical engineering and automation and mechanical engineering sectors in particular are therefore investing in automation solutions that offer better competitive opportunities.
More automation means bigger profits
Automated systems have an advantage over analogue methods in terms of both productivity and product quality. Processing and/or machining steps are faster, more accurate and benefit from a lower error rate. Automation also optimises previously time-consuming materials management, engineering and production procedures across the board. This has a number of benefits for companies – from lower personnel costs and shorter delivery times to the elimination of inefficient routine tasks. What’s more, innovative processing technologies take care of monotonous or physically demanding work, meaning staff can primarily focus on monitoring the automated processes. Their only manual tasks are process steps that have not yet been automated. This generates significant cost savings for panel building and switchgear manufacturing companies in particular. With software solutions for efficient engineering and a product portfolio that meets the need for highly economical, loss-free production, Rittal is actively helping to shape the new era of automation in panel building and switchgear manufacturing.
Automating with Rittal
Based on more than 50 years of experience in panel building and switchgear manufacturing, Rittal has focused the expansion of its portfolio on automated process steps and machining methods. Rittal Automation Systems provides all the automation support required to make enclosure manufacturing faster, easier, more accurate and more reproducible. End-to-end automation of production processes is possible thanks to the data generated at the engineering stage with the help of Eplan tools. The basis for this is the virtual prototype, which includes all relevant information and, in conjunction with products from Rittal Automation Systems, ensures maximum efficiency throughout the panel building workflow. In addition to products for automated machining, assembly and wire processing, software solutions for enclosure configuration and project planning are also available. When it comes to automating operations and boosting productivity, efficient end-to-end digital processes with solutions from a single source are the key to a successful future.