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White Paper Proposal on How ICT Enhancements are Transforming Manufacturing

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White Paper Proposal on How ICT Enhancements are Transforming Manufacturing

Introduction

Traditionally, manufacturing has been considered as the process of obtaining physical products from raw material as the main inputs. For centuries, the process has been taking place in factories, whose main tasks have been to manage automation practices and disconnected communication procedures. Today, different manufacturing units across the world are feeling the pressure from both shareholders and the management to produce quality commodities using minimum resources. As a result, the majority of them have been forced to transform by leveraging ICT enhancements.   Automation of systems through ICT enhancements is likely to be a huge improvement in the manufacturing sector, and companies that invest in smart factories will become increasingly agile, transparent, proactive to trends in the market, and more connected to their customers while ensuring a good return on the investment. Presently, it is evident that the future of manufacturing is going to be smart factories.

Project Overview-White Paper Proposal on How ICT Enhancements are Transforming Manufacturing

This will be a business and technology white paper, being an educational report that presents details about ways in which ICT has transformed traditional manufacturing in a leap forward towards the realization of smart factories. The primary audience is Professor Levine. The secondary audience consists of mechanical engineering students. The main aim is to challenge their imagination when designing next-generation production systems or better products with improved features.

Methods/Procedure-White Paper Proposal on How ICT Enhancements are Transforming Manufacturing

To carry out an in-depth exploration of the topic at hand, extensive research will be conducted to gain the necessary knowledge. Surveys and studies will be conducted on leading smart manufacturing companies to gather enough evidence to substantiate my claims. If possible, key members of these organizations will be interviewed to obtain their expertise. Associated outsiders may also provide specialized knowledge. More importantly, the internet will be extensively used to search credible online sources when gathering further information about the contribution of ICT in developing smart factories. Afterward, an outline will be prepared before writing the first draft. This will be followed by editing before presenting the final draft.

Background

Connectivity within the manufacturing sector dates back to many years ago. Over this time, engineers have sought new and better ways to automate production and manage disjointed communication protocols (Burke, 2018). The result has been the transformation of various production units enabling them to become both fully connected and adaptive. A new trend in which information technology has bridged the gap between physical and digital world and the development of industrial revolution has made the complete makeover of the production chain completely feasible. To achieve complete digital supply network in the manufacturing sector, however, there is a need for manufacturers to facilitate horizontal, vertical, and end-to-end integration is their production units through their value chain, operational, and manufacturing systems (Martin & Leurent, 2017). This development will enable them to increase their competitive advantage. Moreover, making use of comprehensive sourcing will enable them to reduce operational costs and to add more value to their products (Hozdić, 2015).

The manufacturing sector has been experiencing transformation in line with this notion. For instance, there has been a major shift from Ethernet wireless communication to enhanced information technology solutions in which a connection has been established between cyber-physical systems and automation through information and communication technology. Through this transformation, the manufacturing process has been developed from separated and fragmented processes to completely integrated systems that suit the end user’s requirements. The developments have been advantageous in the manufacturing sector given that it has become easier for engineers to design complex control systems. Moreover, it is now easy to integrate factory floor, a development that has facilitated smooth production process. This paper will focus on different ways through which information and communication technology could integrate with conventional automation to facilitate production in factories and other production lines.

Time Line-White Paper Proposal on How ICT Enhancements are Transforming Manufacturing

The project will take two weeks as the timeline bellow shows

DATE ITEM DUE NOTE
October 15, 2018 Proposal due  
October 22, 2018 White paper drafts due (optional)
October 29, 2018 White paper due  

 

Qualifications

Being a mechanical engineering student and based on the knowledge that I have acquired regarding automation in the factory over several years of study, I am convinced that the project presents a great opportunity for me to acquire more information on the smart factory, the process of acquiring and integrating data, and the advantages of having such systems. More importantly, it will help me familiarize with ways in which manufacturers are implementing smart factory. The knowledge acquired will go a long way in preparing me for my future career.

Call to Action

Over the years, the manufacturing sector in different parts of the world has undergone tremendous transformation by leveraging ICT enhancements. The future is smart factory. Given the great interest that I have in this area, I would like to request your approval so that I can work on this project. This will greatly be of benefit to me since I will acquire wide knowledge that may be of help to me in the future.

 

References

Burke, R, et al. (2018).The Smart Factory. Retrieved from https://www2.deloitte.com/insights/us/en/focus/industry-4-0/smart-factory-connected-manufacturing.html

Hozdić, E. (2015). Smart factory for industry 4.0: A review. International Journal of Modern Manufacturing Technologies, 7(1), 28-35.

Martin, C., & Leurent, H. (2017). Technology and innovation for the future of production: cccelerating value creation. In World Economic Forum, Geneva Switzerland.