With the ever-increasing linkages between making things and controlling processes through cloud computing and Big Data, California’s Silicon Valley was the obvious choice for Festo to site its first North American Experience Center. Festo, a manufacturing and processing automation supplier, is designing these facilities as demonstration halls where augmented reality devices will let visitors experience manufacturing and processing systems virtually.
Targeted industries include semiconductors and electronics, solar and flat panel, assembly and testing, medical technology, laboratory automation, food and packaging, and process automation. Rotating exhibits will showcase active and static displays of the latest automated manufacturing and processing technologies.
Planned demonstrations include:
- Modular and reconfigurable systems conforming to the concepts of Industry 4.0—the fourth Industrial Revolution;
- Cyber-physical devices that change functionality based on downloadable apps;
- Predictive analytics relying on smart-sensors, Big Data concepts, and cloud connectivity alerting teams of system failures before they happen;
- Cloud-based dashboards and data analytics for maximum overall equipment/process effectiveness;
- Solutions for the most energy-efficient manufacturing and processing;
- Frictionless transport through high temperature superconductors;
- Online productivity tools for bringing products and systems to market faster and with less engineering overhead.
The Experience Center concept also features a laboratory for focused customer solutions, training, and meeting areas. “The Festo Experience Center in Santa Clara will bring our people closer to existing customers in the semiconductor, life sciences, and other industries and open the door to developing new strategic relationships,” says Richard J. Huss, president of Festo US. “From a solutions development perspective, Festo teams will be enriched by being in the heart of one of the most dynamic innovation incubators in the world. All of this energy will be put toward helping customers make things and control processes better, faster, and with greater flexibility by linking automation technology with Big Data and cloud computing.”