ARC Advisory Group has a podcast series on Digital Transformation Viewpoints. ARC’s Bob Gill recently interviewed Emerson’s Jonas Berge for his views on technology and digital transformation. They discussed:
…how technology developments in areas including wireless process instruments, networks and protocols, advanced analytics apps, augmented and virtual reality, are enabling industrial plants to more easily implement new and powerful digital ways of working and facilitating transformation programs at industrial companies across the Asia Pacific region.
Bob opened the interview asking Jonas about what drives his enthusiasm and passion for industrial automation. Jonas explained that currently:
…we are at the 4th industrial revolution… We enable plants to produce an abundance of food & beverage, clean water, clothes, building materials, energy, light and power, hygiene products, medication, other daily necessities, and fuel for transportation – all in a sustainable fashion.
Jonas next shared his role at Emerson.
My job is to help plants cut through the hype and get them started on their digital journey. This starts with a discovery workshop to capture challenges the plant is facing, and we also explore the many new digital solutions for this such as dashboards and augmented reality, the underlying predictive analytics, the data management, and advanced sensors. If this is conducted in our solutions center in Singapore, I let plant personnel try all this hands-on, including virtual reality and wearable tablets etc.
He clarified what digital transformation means for manufacturers and producers.
Digital transformation means changing from manual and paper-based ways of working to new automatic, digital, software-based, and data-driven work practices. This means plant personnel have a personalized dashboard with information and mobile notifications relevant to their work. The information on the dashboards comes from analytics. The analytics uses data which in turn comes from sensors. Plants already have lots of sensors, but those are process sensors. You can’t predict equipment problems using only process data. You also need equipment data. So, you need additional sensors for vibration, acoustic noise, corrosion, temperature, and fluid levels etc. – sitting on your pumps and heat exchangers and so on. Well, it is not practical to wire all these additional sensors in a running plant. Therefore, wireless sensors are critical to digital transformation. And device management is a good tool to manage the health of all these sensors themselves, and the valves.
Listen to this 33-minute podcast for more as Jonas describes common misconceptions, his recommendations on ways to advance your efforts, the role of artificial intelligence in digital transformation, and using a roadmap tool for planning your path forward.
Visit the Digital Transformation section on Emerson.com for perspectives on using today’s digital technologies and expertise to drive improved business performance.