Virtual Development of Manufacturing

Robotic arms working in a factory environment on parts of a car chassis.

Although automotive OEMs and suppliers have perfected their launch processes over decades, the majority recognize the industry is evolving and that their manufacturing processes must also evolve to keep up. Smart manufacturing is a broad term that includes factory automation, sensors, and digital technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and the industrial internet of things (IoT).

Many manufacturers have implemented smart manufacturing to some degree but have not yet taken steps to extract the maximum value from the data being produced. With a comprehensive digital twin of production, information can be automatically collected, analyzed, and shared to develop manufacturing work cells and assembly lines in the virtual world before they are physically installed.

The virtual development process allows OEMs and suppliers to rehearse the launch of a new product digitally before launching it in the factory. The actionable insights gained through the digitalization of manufacturing prevent expensive errors, eliminate time-consuming rework, and produce first-time quality parts at launch and throughout the entire product lifecycle.

Although automotive OEMs and suppliers have perfected their launch processes over decades, the majority recognize the industry is evolving and that their manufacturing processes must also evolve to keep up. Smart manufacturing is a broad term that includes factory automation, sensors, and digital technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and the industrial internet of things (IoT).

Many manufacturers have implemented smart manufacturing to some degree but have not yet taken steps to extract the maximum value from the data being produced. With a comprehensive digital twin of production, information can be automatically collected, analyzed, and shared to develop manufacturing work cells and assembly lines in the virtual world before they are physically installed.

The virtual development process allows OEMs and suppliers to rehearse the launch of a new product digitally before launching it in the factory. The actionable insights gained through the digitalization of manufacturing prevent expensive errors, eliminate time-consuming rework, and produce first-time quality parts at launch and throughout the entire product lifecycle.

Start your free, 30-day trial in just minutes.

Discover the power of robotics simulation and virtual commissioning software.

process simulate commissioning trial

Simulate and validate robotics processes today. Learn how to model and simulate automated workcells and lines, how to define and validate complete robot programs, and how to use a virtual PLC and HMI to validate control logic and operator interfaces.

Man siting behind computer screen, holding a car part in his hand and comparing it to the CAD model on the screen.

Learn More

Launch flawlessly with integrated manufacturing

Product development in the auto industry historically begins with product engineering and validation, followed by the development of the manufacturing processes. 

With a smart and integrated manufacturing approach, key product engineering data is shared with the manufacturing team much earlier in the timeline, promoting collaboration between the product and manufacturing design teams. 

This early access to data allows the manufacturing team to develop manufacturing processes in a digital space before implementing them in the factory. The virtual development of manufacturing combines product data, sensors, software, and programming automation to realistically approximate the behavior of individual manufacturing assets and how they will interact with each other. 

Through human simulation, manufacturers can also test the effectiveness, safety, and ergonomics of factory workstations without putting real human operators at risk. Subsequently, launches become more predictable, allowing manufacturers to resolve potential issues before they occur. An integrated manufacturing solution also supports the modular platform strategies recently adopted by automakers to expand their portfolios quickly and efficiently.

The virtual commissioning of robots

In recent years, an advanced level of robotics has emerged as a result of new technologies like AI and the industrial IoT along with hardware and sensor innovations. While this progress has raised the level of operational flexibility and speed, it has also increased the complexity of production development, making the commissioning of a new line timely and expensive. 

Traditionally, manufacturers have commissioned automation equipment at the end of the value chain after product design, tooling development, and industrial controls engineering are complete. When a production line needs to be commissioned or changed, manufacturers are forced to halt operations to debug the controllers on live equipment. 

With a robotics simulation solution, offline programming and virtual commissioning technology allow manufacturers to translate the simulated robotics operations to the shop floor without interrupting production.

Man siting behind computer screen, holding a car part in his hand and comparing it to the CAD model on the screen.

Solutions