Manufacturing automation leaders collaborate

Manufacturing automation leaders collaborate

Fanuc, Cisco, Rockwell Automation, and Preferred Networks collaborate to optimize industrial production through analytics.

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April 26, 2016

Tokyo, Japan – Fanuc Corp., the world’s leading supplier of robotics and factory automation, is collaborating with Cisco, the worldwide leader in IT-enabled digitization, as well as Rockwell Automation, the world’s largest company dedicated to industrial automation and information solutions, and Preferred Networks, a leading provider of Artificial Intelligence solutions. The companies will work together on the development and deployment of the Fanuc Intelligent Edge Link and Drive (FIELD) system, a platform that connects not only computer numerical control machines (CNCs) and robots, but also peripheral devices and sensors – to deliver analytics that optimize manufacturing production.

The FIELD system will be a platform for the delivery of advanced analytics for Fanuc CNCs, robots, peripheral devices, and sensors used in automation systems. It will drive improved machine reliability, quality, flexibility, and speed – elevating the overall equipment efficiency (OEE) and increasing manufacturing profitability. It will also provide advanced machine learning and deep learning capabilities. By working with Cisco, Rockwell Automation, and Preferred Networks – Fanuc will offer a complete solution including network and compute infrastructure, applications, and an enabling middleware platform. With this open platform – application developers, sensor and peripheral device makers, system integrators, and others can build solutions that improve equipment efficiency, manufacturing output, and quality.

Intelligent manufacturing
The FIELD system will bring the power of advanced machine learning and artificial intelligence into the hands of customers and application developers – driving manufacturing to a new level of productivity and efficiency. Fanuc and Preferred Networks have established these new technologies for applications such as Bin Picking robots, anomaly detection, and failure prediction. The FIELD system combines both artificial intelligence and edge-computing technologies – enabling distributed learning. Data is generated from robots and machines and is processed in real time at the edge of the network. This allows those devices to intelligently coordinate and collaborate in a flexible manner – resulting in sophisticated manufacturing practices not before possible.

Who provides what for the FIELD System?
Fanuc: Provides CNCs and robots with embedded sensors to track key variables required to improve machine reliability, quality, and speed.

Fanuc, Cisco, and Preferred Networks: Provides enabling middleware Platform software, as well as security and application lifecycle management applications. It will also leverage Preferred Networks’ open deep learning framework (Chainer), IoT Stream Engine (SensorBee) – and other advanced machine learning libraries within its Deep Intelligence in-Motion (DIMo) platform.

Cisco and Rockwell Automation: Provides networking, compute and security infrastructure to connect the robots, CNCs, and other cell equipment to the FIELD applications. Based on the Rockwell Automation and Cisco collaboratively developed Converged Plantwide Ethernet (CPwE) architecture – this further drives improved security, connectivity, flexibility, and scalability – all of which allows connection from a single, small cell to a large factory with hundreds of cells.

Fanuc, Rockwell Automation, and Preferred Networks: Delivers the initial Application Software on top of the FIELD middleware and infrastructure platform. This will extend the LINK-i and ZDT applications currently deployed, along with additional deep learning applications from the Fanuc and Preferred Networks partnership. It is planned that Rockwell Automation manufacturing software products (including FactoryTalk View, FactoryTalk VantagePoint, and FactoryTalk Production Center) will seamlessly integrate with the FIELD system to speed deployment.

About Fanuc Corp.
Fanuc Corp., headquartered at the foot of Mt. Fuji, Japan, is the global leader and the most innovative manufacturer of Factory Automation, Robots and Robomachines in the world. With 252 offices in 46 countries, Fanuc provides world-class service and support to customers globally. Since its inception in 1972, FANUC has contributed to the automation of machine tools as a pioneer in the development of computer numerical control equipment. Fanuc technology has been a leading force in a worldwide manufacturing revolution, which evolved from the automation of a single machine to the automation of entire production lines.

About Cisco
Cisco is the worldwide leader in IT that helps companies seize the opportunities of tomorrow by proving that amazing things can happen when you connect the previously unconnected.

About Preferred Networks
Preferred Networks Inc. (PFN) is a Tokyo-based startup focusing on applications of latest artificial intelligence technologies to emerging problems in the Internet of Things (IoT). PFN’s vision is the realization of Deep Intelligence - a future IoT in which all devices, as well as the network itself, are intelligent. PFN develops software related to deep learning and IoT, and provides Deep Intelligence in-Motion solutions. PFN collaborates with many world-leading companies in industries, such as Fanuc for intelligent robots and Toyota motors for autonomous driving.

Sourc: Fanuc America Corp.