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Kusatsu Factory Improves Productivity Based on Objective Data

Sysmac NJ SQL Client - Big Data Drives Productivity Gains

Our Kusatsu factory needed to identify and assess continuous improvement projects with solid data in addition to anecdotal reports from plant-floor operators. The factory adopted an easy-to-use solution that enables real-time tracing of a product through all the manufacturing processes, and provides visualization to analyze where improvements can be made. The combination of Sysmac NJ SQL Client and Microsoft Big Data software with an Excel front end has helped the factory reduce resources needed to identify and implement production improvements.

“Innovation in manufacturing is ultimately improvement of productivity,” says Masaru Takeuchi, Automation Systems Division HQ Senior General Manager of Omron. “The experience and intuition of experts take a major role in improvement activities at production sites, but the improvement points that the experts cannot identify are hidden in the bottlenecks which hinder production efficiency. In order to overcome such situations and promote further improvements, we needed objective data.”

To meet this need, we embarked on a new application of the Sysmac NJ series of integrated Machine Automation Controllers, specifically models with built-in SQL client services that allow a machine or system to log data directly into databases running on a server without any middleware or PC.

The solution uses Microsoft SQL Server and Excel software to consolidate the logs, which are collected from devices on a production line and linked with each product, into the database and can graph the logs in real time. “Some people may avoid Business Intelligence (BI) due to complications. We, however, aimed to visualize actual manufacturing processes based on the Sysmac NJ Controller in real time and to create the solution that enables on-site workers to easily graph the data,” says Mr. Takeuchi.

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