Category Archives: digital manufacturing

The Increasing Importance of Cybersecurity in Manufacturing

cybersecurity

The topic of cybersecurity in manufacturing is something most companies only give thought to when an issue arises. Experience shows, many of these attacks happened to large retail organizations that process millions of financial transactions. For business owners within the industrial and manufacturing industries this preference has offered a measure of assurance, if not security. The reason being, many hackers had little interest in tampering with the systems used in these industries.

This is now a false sense of security. A report from Kaspersky Labs, a global cybersecurity company, said that manufacturing companies account for one-third of all attacks. Kaspersky Labs cited an uptick in invasions of Operational Technology (OT), including industrial control systems (ICS) and supervisory control and data acquisition programs (SCADA). OT systems control the management of production lines, monitoring of gas and oil, and the control of other operations. During 2017, Kaspersky Labs cited attacks on ICS and SCADA, including some 18,000 different modifications of malware, according to a report in Tech Republic.

Changing Focus

Kaspersky Labs, which protects corporate systems, data and processes in public sector organizations and smaller businesses, said hackers are switching their focus. These changes could include anything from ransomware to the theft of intellectual property (IP) and most recently crypto mining, which creates a slow, yet steady, stream of stolen funds.

Hackers are constantly shifting their focus, looking for organizations with vulnerabilities such as recent targets in the industries of defense and finance as well as academia. In 2017, energy and industrial firms, petrochemical companies and manufacturing were also targets. In these cases, they chose IP theft as their weapon of choice, using the theft to gain copies of successful products or to gain competitive advantage in the marketplace. IP theft negates the valuable time and money spent on R&D, cutting into margins and competitive advantage.

Damage Control

With cyberattacks becoming an increasingly real issue, it’s critical for manufacturers to look for ways to improve all levels of security within the business. Now more than ever, manufacturers need to apply ICS and SCADA to protect systems against intentional or accidental security threats coming from inside or outside the organization.

To create a more secure environment, it’s suggested that manufacturers assess their current OT and IT processes and determine where upgrades need to be made. This will likely include adding layers of additional security throughout the organization. Ongoing and frequent assessments will help determine if a company can evolve and survive the newest hacking targets.

Secure Steps to Consider

Use intrusion detection and a firewall help protect the perimeter from an outside attack.

Secure communications through a virtual private network (VPN) and/or use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL).

Increase security by installing antivirus and host-based intrusion detection software.

Control security by limiting access to network elements and applications.

Protect the physical surroundings using locks and alarm monitoring systems.

 

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Robots + Humans Collaborating on The Manufacturing Floor = “Cobots”

fanuc robot manufacturing

 

 

 

 

 

Throughout the manufacturing industry, the density of robots continues to rise around the world. Such technological applications help free up time for tasks requiring creativity and thought. According to the International Federation of Robotics, there is an average of 74 robot units per 10,000 employees. This includes the high end of 99 units in Europe, 84 in the Americas and 63 in Asia.

Countries by Level of Automation

Republic of Korea

Singapore

Germany

Japan

Sweden

Denmark

United States

Italy

Belgium

Taiwan

Robot Density

Since 2016, robot density continues to grow, as represented by the United States’ No. 7 rank in the countries of automation list above. Robots have been part of ongoing efforts to strengthen the American market and keep manufacturing at home. The automotive industry leads the way in the use of robots and it’s anticipated that between 2017 and 2020 the use of robots will rise 15 percent each year on average, according to a report from the International Federation of Robotics.

Manufacturing Collaboration

Despite some fears of robots replacing jobs, robots are now a common scene in many factories as robots and humans learn to co-exist. One of the ways this is happening is through Robotic Process Automation or RPA. With technological similarities to graphical user interface testing tools, RPA tools can automate interactions with the graphical user interface. RPA can also mimic the task-based processes, speeding up repetitive tasks and freeing up humans for interaction and the application of intelligence, judgement and reasoning. With the potential to fully automate routine tasks, RPA can reduce the total cost of end-to-end transactional processes by 50 percent to 75 percent, according to an RPA release from The Hackett Group, a global strategy, operations and business application consulting firm.

Collaborations on the manufacturing floor also include self-navigating Autonomous Indoor Vehicles, which shift goods between workstations without the need for magnets or beacons. This joint work between human and robot was coined “cobot” by professors from Northwestern University and is being tested at Cornell Dubilier, a power manufacturer who is using robots to speed up the inspection of capacitor installations, doubling the speed of its labeling process.

Growing Demand in RPA

The behind-the-scenes aspect of RPA translates into a variety of applications from supply chains, interactions between IT systems and repetitive business office tasks. Adoption will necessitate an increasing level of comfort for manufacturers concerning robotics and artificial intelligence’s. It remains to be seen how quickly companies will embrace these technologies, but such adoption has the potential to revolutionize the industry and the work of those employed within it.

This article is brought to you by The Cleveland Deburring Machine Company. CDMC can provide a deburring solution for gears, sprockets, aerospace and defense, automotive deburring, power transmission, powdered metals, fluid power and custom deburring applications. Our no-charge application evaluation includes a detailed report and process description in as little as 3 to 5 business days. Contact CDMC today and speak with one of our experts!

 

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Manufacturing in Canada is A Substantial Contributor to Their GDP

manufacturing in Canada

Canada has a very important manufacturing industry and is among the wealthiest nations in the world with a purchasing power of $1.75 trillion and a nominal GDP of $1.6 trillion, ranking it the 10th largest GDP in 2016. Canada is also known to be one of the countries with a highest economic freedom index. The Canadian economy, as the economy of most developed countries, is dominated by the tertiary sector, where about three-quarters of Canadians are employed.

Today, manufactured products account for 11 percent of the Canadian GDP. It is the second largest economic sector after real estate.  In Canada, manufacturing is a well-paying and high-skilled sector that pays about 1.85 billion dollars weekly to Canadians, which is more than any other sector in the country. It benefits about 1.7 million Canadian workers through full-time jobs and it also impacts about 3 million indirect jobs. Canadian manufactured products represented 61% of total merchandises exported by Canada.

Autos and Aircraft

The top manufacturing sector by sales in Canada is transportation equipment which generates $112.6 billion annually. Canada is home to major automobile makers from the United States, Japan and different Canadian firms such as Magna International and Linamar Corporation. However, Canada produces much more than just cars and motorcycles. They also provide a significant amount of jets.  For example, Bombardier Inc. is a Canadian multinational aerospace and transportation company and the third largest manufacturer of commercial aircraft in the world.

Food Processing

The second most important manufacturing industry is food processing which sold more than $107.1 billion each year since 2014. Companies such as Beaver Buzz (energy drinks and teas), Just Us! Coffee Roasters Co-op (Coffee), DavidsTea (teas) represent the largest companies in this sector. The US is the largest purchaser of Canadian food products buying more than half of all food exports. Their stricter regulations of GMOs-free and organic specialty foods have made them a primary producer for the US health food market.

Energy

Petroleum and natural gas products are responsible for generating 83.1 billion of the Canadian economy. In fact, Canada has the third-largest oil reserves in the world and is the fifth largest oil producer. There are about a dozen of oil companies in Canada and among the most important are Imperial Oil, Shell Canada, and Suncor Energy. Guess who buys the majority of Canadian petroleum and petroleum product exports? The US, of course. In fact, Canada is the largest source of US petroleum imports.

The key to understanding the prosperous Canadian economy is the development of the manufacturing industry. Canada has been focused on having one of the most educated labor forces, which is an important basis to sustain the development of the economy and the welfare of the population. With a well-developed infrastructure since the 1960’s, Canadian industry has thrived. The investment and growth of this sector have allowed the promotion of technology and other public projects further fueling wealth and stability.

This article brought to you by The Cleveland Deburring Machine Company. CDMC can provide a deburring solution for gears, sprockets, aerospace and defense, automotive deburring, power transmission, powdered metals, fluid power and custom deburring applications. Our no-charge application evaluation includes a detailed report and process description in as little as 3 to 5 business days. Contact CDMC today for a deburring machine that’s right for you.

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