“Artificial Intelligence and Manufacturing Industries”
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is changing the course of Humankind, from the industrial revolution to AI, the world has adapted to the changing times. AI is also being used by the leading manufactures in different sectors to boost their production as amidst closures and cutdowns, the manufacturing industry is trying to stay on AI.
The pandemic disrupted several manufacturing industries and supply chains of manufactures, yet the companies are holding back investment in high technology involving AI. The manufacturing industry is still seeing the potential of AI for revenue generation and cost-effectiveness concerns.
Sangram Kadam, Vice President and Head (APAC and META) at Birlasoft says, “A large number of manufacturing companies, and supply chains as collateral, have had to halt their operations. Many SMEs and large manufacturing plants have halted or postponed any new technology upgrade in their factories to recover from the losses caused by the lockdown and economic slowdown.”
At the same time, a majority of manufacturing units adopted or are planning to adopt AI in their current setup to enhance their manufacturing process. But the adaptation of the new technology has its limitations and problems that many face in the initial phase.
Unavailability of applicable data, disparate incompatible nature of the data available, inadequate storage facilities, and slow response time are some of the issues that are currently in the manufacturing industry. The extent and pace of digitization in the country, privacy and security concerns, and employee resistance to change are some of the other challenges.
According to early adopters of AI, the advantages of using AI is immense. The technology allows one to predict the future outcomes of the machines as to when or if functional equipment will fail, hence, increasing the capacity of the manufacturing units.
AI has the potential to reduce the gap between the expenses of a business and its revenue generation. Different aspects come in handy here, like manpower, efficiency, effectiveness, time, accuracy, and several other things that increase a companies revenue and helping in the overall development.
A major support system for AI is Data, an AI system has to learn from data for it to deliver on its function. AI builds and stores knowledge using data from multiple sources. So to adopt AI as a driving force in the manufacturing industry, the companies or units have to assemble data for the AI to maximize the results.
To gather data and to put it in a way that the AI can access it is still a hard nut to crack in the manufacturing industry. But gradually technologies are coming up to cope with this problem and reduce the limitations for the manufactures.
AI is new to the world and, it has not developed in a way that it can function itself, it needs a human to work effectively. The human talent in the field of AI is in shortage and, the manufacturer needs these talents for the adoption of AI.
Most experts are not trained in building predictive models or using advanced analytics powered by AI. Instead, they rely on teams of data scientists and advanced analytics to assist them in using the latest technologies in operations. So an expert in AI will eventually boost the manufacturing industry in some way.
Artificial Intelligence is a new technology, the manufacturing industry is aspiring for AI as manufacturers are now leading the way in applying artificial intelligence technology, applying AI-powered analytics to data to improve efficiency, product quality, and employees’ safety. So, the future of manufacturing holds a key place for AI if manufacturers need to evolve according to the changing times.
By Dr Deepak Kohli
(The writer is a Joint Secretary, Environment, Forest and Climate Change Department, UP Govt. Views expressed are his personal.)