Digital Catapult Creates Connected Factory Demonstrator

January 23, 2018

Digital Catapult, Dyer Engineering and Special Metals Wiggin have teamed up on an industry-first project to prove the potential of leading-edge networks technologies which can unlock productivity, streamline processes, improve yield and increase quality control. The Connected Factory Demonstrator brings together Digital Catapult with the two innovative manufacturing businesses and the UK startup community to explore how future networks technologies including LPWAN (low-powered, wide area networks) can drive improvements throughout the product lifecycle.

Jeremy Silver, CEO, Digital Catapult, said: “The impact of advanced digital technologies cannot be underestimated, and we’re looking forward to working with Dyer Engineering and Special Metals Wiggin to demonstrate the full potential of future networks technologies in a working manufacturing environment. This project will show how, by utilising technology to help innovation flourish, businesses can expect to see numerous practical benefits, from improved processes to better quality control.”

To help solve some of the challenges related to process measurement, optimisation and control as well as indoor tracking for the location of assets, equipment and components, Digital Catapult has launched an Open Call to find innovative startups working with IoT and LPWAN technologies. Startups with products or applications which could solve these challenges are invited to apply online at Digital Catapult’s website.

Dyer Engineering Group, based in County Durham, is an innovative fabrication and machining business manufacturing metal components and structures. Richard Larder, Operations Manager, Dyer Engineering, said: “We are incredibly excited to be at the forefront of the 4th Industrial Revolution in the UK, which will unlock improved standards of living and workplace life. Adopting industrial digital technology is of paramount importance to safeguard UK manufacturing for generations to come. We have benefited from the technological pioneers before us and now feel it is our time to pick up the mantle and take on the challenges and risks of significant change, and we are truly up for it!”

Special Metals Wiggin Limited, based in Hereford, makes a comprehensive range of nickel alloys used in aerospace, energy, marine, automotive and nuclear industries. Dr Jonathan Silk, Quality and Technical Director, Special Metals Wiggin, said: “We are pleased to have been selected as one of the demonstrator sites and excited about the opportunities this will bring to our facility. We anticipate that by introducing state-of-the-art wireless technology we will make significant advancements in process control and asset tracking. This will enhance our position in a highly competitive worldwide market for the supply of nickel alloys. We look forward to the opportunity of working with Digital Catapult and the solution providers.”

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