How design changes with Industry 4.0

Based on the adoption of interconnected and intelligent technologies and solutions, the new paradigm of Industry 4.0 design is gradually changing production processes within Italian manufacturing companies.

However, the digital innovations of the Fourth Industrial Revolution not only affect the way factories produce, but also invest in the design and engineering techniques of the industrial product.

The 4.0 technologies allow a significant improvement in product design thanks to the integration of software components (sensors, GPS) that, connected to machinery or other physical objects, make it possible to collect data from the field. Making products intelligent through the Internet of Things has many advantages at every stage of the product life cycle, including design.

Access to data and information during the use of an industrial product enables designers to constantly monitor its performance and the way it is used. Thanks to real-time monitoring, for example, it is possible to effectively redesign the infrastructure of the digitized product in order to achieve high levels of energy savings, avoid downtime and consequently optimize production flows.

In the automotive sector, more and more companies are relying on IoT to automate various safety procedures for their vehicles. For example, the design of cars with vehicle proximity control sensors, stop-and-go assistance, emergency brakes or 3D maps enables the collection of information that can be used upstream by designers to improve the consumer driving experience and make it safer.

Once this scenario is outlined, it is quite clear to manufacturing companies that they need to rely on technologies based on data collection to improve not only the production of industrial goods, but also their design. In order for the potential benefits of Smart Manufacturing to become effective, the adoption of 4.0 technologies must therefore be accompanied by the implementation of management systems that make it possible to store, share and use data collected in the field and ensure proper management of information throughout the product lifecycle.
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