How can new smart production technologies be integrated on all levels to create the fully connected electronics factory? At this year’s SMTconnect trade show, ASM focused on answering this question with exciting innovations from all areas of its product portfolio. The central motto: Bringing the integrated smart factory to life. The Production Planner and Command Center demonstrated that many tasks in a modern electronics factory can be easily run from a central control point. The two production lines (DEK NeoHorizon, ProcessExpert and Siplace SX as well as E by DEK and E by Siplace) presented the improved Siplace Odd-Shaped Component Package II and the DEK Printer Programming. At the DEK NeoHorizon printer, visitors examined the SmartStencil. The Service portfolio focused on the digital transformation and presented VR solutions for easy maintenance as well as the Learning Management System for the mobile training of line staff and engineers. “What we showed at this year’s SMTconnect in Nuremberg is based on our customers’ desire for a coordinated, open and digital concept for all workflows. Total integration is reshaping many processes in electronics manufacturing, and we want to tap the full potential of the smart factory together with our customers.” says Gabriela Reckewerth, Senior Director Global Marketing.
What does the integrated smart factory look like?
Smart and efficient electronics manufacturing requires the networking and integration of machines and processes, and sometimes entire factories. The company offers a consistent spectrum of open interfaces, standardized protocols and integration platforms for all factory levels. Their spectrum of interfaces and integration solutions extends across five levels, from the machine to factory control via MES solutions to the cloud-based networking of globally distributed plants. These five levels were demonstrated at the show with a range of components extending to open high-performance interfaces, MES integration scenarios, and a whole lot more.
SmartStencil: RFID-based service life control for printing stencils
With the SmartStencil, an RFID-based hardware and software solution was introduced for monitoring and managing the service life of stencils in DEK printers. With this, manufacturers can have complete transparency regarding the operating times of stencils – automatically and without manual scanning. RFID scanners read the stencils’ RFID tags to recognize “spent” stencils, warn of the impending end of a stencil‘s predefined service life and prevent the printing process from being started if the maximum number of printing cycles has been exceeded. At the same time, they write the current job‘s print cycles to the RFID tag of the stencil that’s currently in the printer. The SmartStencil can be retrofitted in existing printers and stencils, works with stencils from any supplier, and can be used with many stencil types and carrier systems (DEK VectorGuard frames or classic mesh-mounted stencils). It also makes internal logistics and component processes more efficient.
Command Center: Software solution for intelligent operator management
Another highlight of the show was the Command Center, an innovative software platform that revolutionizes traditional operator models with their rigid assignment of people to lines. The Command Center monitors all factory production lines and analyzes all data and status messages. If many assists are needed, it uses smart devices (e.g., smart watches) to notify operators with the appropriate training while supplying them with the necessary information and help. Another benefit: assists like adjustments that don’t require an operator’s physical presence on the line, it can be performed from a central console.
Maintenance 4.0: Smart service tools and integration scenarios
Another focal point was the smart service tools as part of Maintenance 4.0. This include a new app with the virtual training offerings of the company’s Academy, an e-learning platform. Visitors were able to test the app‘s virtual reality components, which convey hands-on experience for certain maintenance workflows. The Service team also presented integration scenarios for optimized maintenance management for easy planning and smart user guidance, as well as the Remote Smart Factory for secure global connectivity and support between the equipment supplier and electronics manufacturers.
Quality and smart software for the mid-speed segment
E by DEK and E by Siplace, which were developed especially for the flexible mid-speed market, was also present at the tradeshow. The machines feature many functionalities from high-end Siplace and DEK solutions that make them unbeatable in their segment in terms of quality and price-performance ratio. The company demonstrated how electronics manufacturers in all industry groups can benefit from E by ASM thanks to the platforms’ performance ratings and smart software portfolio. The E solutions support many of the company’s software solutions that improve not just line productivity but the processes and efficiency of the entire factory.