Underlining the theme of IIoT from the industrial automation perspective, the one-day conference was kick-started with the inaugural lamp lighting ceremony by Sujata Tilak, President, ISA Pune Section; Markus Bochynek, Executive Board (Vorstand), VP, Sales & Marketing, AUCOTEC AG; Rajeev Jorapur, VP, MIS, Bajaj Auto Ltd & Member of Leaders Excellence; Somnath Chakraborty, Director, Siemens Industry Software and then followed a welcome address and introduction of ISA Pune Section by Tilak.
The digital journey
The opening session comprised of three keynote addresses stressing the digital transformation from the global, end-user and solution provider’s perspective. Bochynek presented the opening keynote on the topic ‘Industry 4.0: Global perspective,’ highlighting the power of Big Data, the value of Digital Twin, the challenges to be addressed during the digital transformation journey and the required change in mind-set for embracing such transformation. According to Bochynek, Industry 4.0 creates what has been called a ‘smart factory’. Within the modular structured smart factories, cyber-physical systems monitor physical processes, create a virtual copy of the physical world and make decentralised decisions. He also briefed the role of his company, AUCOTEC in Industry 4.0 and noted the criteria for appropriate engineering platform for a doable step-by-step transformation towards industry 4.0.
The second keynote was given by Jorapur on the topic ‘Digital transformation in Indian manufacturing sector’ underlining the end-user’s perspective. During his presentation, he cited an example comparing the classical musical show to traditional manufacturing and Broadway show to new age manufacturing to bring out the opinion that a transformation from Classic Musical Show (two artists performing with the same sync) to Broadway show (1000 artists performing with the same sync) needs flexibility, adaptability and maintaining the same quality while scaling it up. The same applies to manufacturing. He further elaborated three principles that can be followed to achieve this journey of transformation – Less is more, connect with the core and whole > sum of parts.
Nikhil Kelkar, Sr Director, Siemens Industry Software, presented the third keynote on ‘Digital transformation, a solution providers perspective’ while emphasising the company’s way of looking into Industry 4.0. He stressed the importance of creating a powerful digital twin of the entire value chain from product design, production planning, services to production execution, wherein in the services domain, Siemens’ open cloud based system called Mindsphere collects data from everywhere and formulates one integrated data model.
The great expectations!!
The second session of the conference began with a panel discussion on the topic ‘The great expectations’ with three panellists namely Rajendra Ghaisas, Sr VP, Sigma Electric; Ravindra Deshmukh, Head—Manufacturing IT, Volkswagen; and Sachin Kotasthane, Senior Architect IT Strategy and Manufacturing Solutions, Tata Motors, represented the end-user segment and three panelists namely Hitendra Uppal, Director, San Telequip; Vishal Pansare, Business Manager, Logicon Techno Solutions; and Sujata Tilak, MD, Ascent Intellimation, represented the solution providers’ end, while Tilak moderated the discussion along with giving her opinions on fulfilling the expectations from end users. The discussion gave an overview of expectations of the manufacturing industry from IIoT solutions and how solution providers fulfil the expectations. Also discussed were the challenges on both sides and how to go achieve a win-win scenario.
Speaking on the challenges faced and representing the end user segment, Ghaisas mentioned that his company has machines from different brands with a different set of controllers built in them. So, he asked the solution providers if they could provide a standard solution to connect the different set of machines. He was of the opinion that solution providers should run a pilot IIoT project without worrying about ROI and make it a success by ensuring they are able to get all the data without losing any of it. Deshmukh emphasised that his company wants to implement IIoT in key areas, such as data acquisition, mobility, operation, traceability and maintenance, and noted that they are looking for a standardised approach for implementation. On similar lines, Kotasthane mentioned that his company is also looking for a structured approach, viable business case and a solution that pays for itself.
Fulfilling the expectations of end users, Uppal opined about the methods of implementing IIoT by defining the pain areas, getting data related to it and finally act on it. He mentioned that lots of skill sets need to be acquired and lastly, some amount of financial investment and planning is also needed. He was of the opinion that end users should be willing for experiments, while implementing IIoT. Pansare highlighted that IIoT needs proper network connectivity. While addressing the challenges faced by end users, he mentioned that the end users’ requirements and their overall approach should be clear to the solution providers when they are seeking for an IIoT implementation. Agreeing on the same, Tilak mentioned that working with the customers, adapting to their needs and making them our partner is the key to achieve success. Moving forward, she concluded the discussion that champions have to emerge from the end users’ side, who have the mind-set to invest and promote the benefits of new age technologies like IoT among their peers.
The panel discussion was followed by a presentation on the topic ‘Doing IIoT the right way’ by Amol Mate, VP – Industrial Business Unit, Altizon Systems. Mate discussed on how to executue IIoT projects the right way—from choosing right use cases to bringing stakeholders on board and from implementation challenges to best practices to achieve the desired business outcome. The next session had two presentations on ‘IIoT in action’ case studies with Asset Care reference from Dinesh R, Associate Manager Instrumentation, Amway, and a brownfield reference from Aditya Wagh, Sr Manager, Ascent Intellimation.
Importance of cyber security in IIoT
Giving a presentation on major risks related to IIoT was Neeraj Agrawal, Associate Director, Nuclear Power Corporation India, who stressed the importance of cyber security in IIoT. He mentioned about three major IIoT risks – security, privacy and trust. “We should always understand fully what technology is being utilised, what data is being captured, where it is being transmitted and stored, who has access to it and what mechanism are in place to protect it,” said Agrawal. He further added that data will play a major role, as such cyber security standards must be strictly followed by the companies who want to leverage the benefits of IIoT.
The way forward…
The final session of the one-day conference comprised mix of presentations and a closing keynote that gave an overview on how to transform towards Industry 4.0. The first presentation was by Virendra Deshpande; Head—Consumer Market, Omron Automation, on the topic ‘Smart sensors and PLCs foundation of IIoT.’ He highlighted industrial automation as foundation of IIoT and noted that companies should follow open network and communication system like EtherNet/IP, EtherCAT and IO-Link, wherein vertical Integration and standardisation are available. Presenting about the IIoT platform was Somnath Chakraborty, Director, Siemens Industry Software, who discussed on how IIoT platforms facilitate and expedite development of IIoT applications. Chakraborty highlighted Siemens’ offering such as digital twin and the cloud platform Mindsphere that provides an ecosystem for customers and partners to build together and obtain a complete IIoT solution. Lastly, a discussion on monetising IIoT was put forward as a closing keynote by Ajay Bhagwat, MD, Renu Electronics. He talked about the hype around IIoT and pointed out the key sectors and applications that can add lot more value with the help of IoT and will make sense to invest on them.
With around 150 delegates along with demos from the sponsors, the conference provided the know-how of IIoT and themed around the discussions from the industrial automation perspective.