Rockwell Automation’s consistent theme for more than ten years concerns the connected manufacturing enterprise. RSTechED, the annual Rockwell Software user conference and training session, kicked off its 17th edition this week in Orlando with a record attendance greater than 1,900. The reality of the connected manufacturing enterprise is gaining ever more critical mass.
Predictive maintenance analytics based upon data gathered from distributed, connected sensors (the Internet of Things idea) empowers maintenance professionals now to find and fix problems before a costly shut down. Repairs and upgrades can be coordinated with production to minimize impact on throughput.
Frank Kulaszewicz, Rockwell Sr. VP Architecture and Software, said in his keynote address that the industry is in a digital inflection point. Control systems are smarter and connected increasing the opportunity for value improvements. He cited estimates that $3.8 trillion of value has already been created with Industrial Internet of Things.