How Can Digital Twin Technology Benefit Your Organization?
by Pushp Kumar Dutt on January 4, 2019
This is not just because digital twins provide invaluable insights into every single aspect of the manufacturing process and production line like never before. It is also because it helps to make better decisions and automate the otherwise complicated process of decision making with dynamic & seamless recalibration of production lines, equipment, processes, and systems.
What Exactly Is Digital Twin Technology?
Digital Twin makes use of augmented and virtual reality along with three-dimensional data and graphics modeling for building a virtual model of a product, service, system, process, or another physical object. This digital twin is an exact and precise replica of the physical world while the status of the exact replica is maintained through updates on a real-time basis.
The digital twin technology can be defined as a technology that is applicable to different environments including but not limited to product monitoring while they are in use and throughout their life cycle.
In manufacturing, a digital twin can be used at different levels:
- Asset level: To create a digital twin of a specific piece of equipment within a production line.
- Component level: To emphasize upon a highly critical, single component within the manufacturing process.
- System level: To improve and monitor an entire production line.
- Process level: To look at the overall process of manufacturing from the process and product design and development to production and manufacturing and from the distribution and use of the end product by consumers throughout the overall life cycle and for the development of products in the future.
How Does Digital Twin Technology Work?
Three primary elements are highlights of digital twin technology:
- Past data: Historical performance data of overall processes, specific systems, and individual machines.
- Present data: Data from equipment sensors, outputs from systems spreading across the distribution chain, outputs from manufacturing platforms and systems, and outputs from systems in supplementary business units including purchasing and customer service on a real-time basis.
- Future data: Inputs from engineers and machine learning.
Significance Of Digital Twin TechnologyLet us understand the significance of the Digital Twin technology with some benefits:
- Connection disparate systems: The digital twin model when planned and designed correctly can be used for connecting with backend business applications to attain business outcomes in the context of supply chain operations such as procurement, manufacturing, and warehousing.
- Visibility: The digital twin technology facilitates visibility in the operations of devices and machines as well as in the larger interconnected systems like an airport or a manufacturing plant.
- What if analysis: It becomes easy to interact with the model via properly designed interfaces and make queries for the what-if questions to the model. This can be done for simulating different conditions that may be otherwise impractical to create in the real life.
- Helps with explaining and understanding behaviors: A digital twin model can be used as a documentation and communication mechanism for explaining as well as understanding the behaviors of an individual machine or a collection of machines.
Concept Behind Digital Twin Technology
The concept of a digital twin consists of three critical parts:
- Virtual products in virtual space
- Physical products in real space
- The connected data that tie the virtual and physical products together
Academia and industry view this concept in their own different ways. Some define it as the digital representation of a certain asset in the field that offers live information from installed sensors based on past and current configuration states like software versions, serialized parts, and so on. On the other hand, IT and service-based organizations define this concept as an integrated virtual model of a specific physical asset that has the ability to mirror all the manufacturing defects and provide continuous updates on the live condition of the asset presently in use.
This concept is based on huge amounts of real-time and cumulative operational data across a wide range of dimensions that captures past and current behaviors of physical assets to offer clues about their future behaviors.
Benefits Of Digital Twin TechnologyDigital twin technologies offer a wide range of benefits, including but not limited to:
- Faster production times
- More efficient delivery and supply chains
- Improved productivity and operational efficiencies
- Providing remotely configuring customized products to customers
- Improved customer service
- Prediction of maintenance issues before the occurrence of breakdowns
- Reduced maintenance costs
- Improved Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) through minimized downtime
- Enhanced reliability of production and equipment lines
- Improved profits on a sustaining basis
Why NetObjex Digital Twin Platform?
Customers in today's tech-savvy world expect their demands to be satisfied with good transparency and within the shortest possible time during the fulfillment and delivery processes. Businesses, in order to satisfy these demands, are required to accelerate both their quality delivery and decision making. It is worthwhile to note here that real-time order status tracking is possible from value chain partners only when there are visibility and collaboration across the supply chain on a cross-functional basis.
A digital twin platform like the NetObjex Digital Twin platform with inputs from the value brings in digital awareness on a real-time basis. It helps stakeholders and value-chain partners manage and govern assets and products across the supply chain in more holistic and structured ways.