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By Claire Swedberg

CTC Stade Puts Plataine's Industrial IoT-based Production Optimization to Work

German company Composite Technology Center, Stade (CTC Stade) and Plataine Technologies have announced a partnership to create a "Factory of the Future" and investigate opportunities within technologies such as Industry 4.0, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and cloud computing, in order to advance the development of series production technologies for the manufacturing of composite components for aircraft construction.

CTC Stade, an Airbus division that designs and manufacture large and complex parts made of carbon-fiber-reinforced polymers, will operate and simulate Plataine's Industrial Internet Production Optimization solutions as part of its effort to maintain competitive advantage by driving innovation and advanced technologies, according to the two companies. Plataine, an American technology firm, first introduced its Total Product Optimization (TPO) software suite in 2007 to eliminate manufacturing inefficiencies (see Aerospace Manufacturer Reduces Waste via RFID-based Material Asset Tracker).

Plataine's TPO solution collects manufacturing- and quality-related data for each manufactured part, the companies explain, and creates a paperless "Digital Twin" and "Digital Thread" to ensure that all produced parts comply with the industry's rigorous regulations and quality standards. The solution automatically provides real-time visibility along the production lifecycle of critical assets, such as raw material, work-in-process (WIP) inventory, kits, assemblies and tooling. Additionally, the solution alerts production personnel and supervisors in the event that individual kits or rolls reach quality or production thresholds, such as shelf-life limits, production delays or bottlenecks, or when unauthorized asset movement is detected.

The TPO suite consists of a planning pillar and a production pillar. The planning pillar uses optimizers that synthesize information regarding production orders and existing inventory, in order to determine the most efficient course of action. The RFID-based Material Asset Tracker (MAT) provides real-time production tracking of materials, tools or whatever else a user wishes to track. The MAT feeds data back into the optimizer software, which updates the production plan accordingly. The solution is integrated with enterprise resource planning (ERP), product lifecycle management (PLM) and manufacturing execution system (MES) technologies to holistically evaluate any stream of work orders for product mix and volume, producing efficient manufacturing plans.

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