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Establishing a system for continuous monitoring, optimisation and compliance.

The aim of this research is to establish a system for continuous monitoring of the quality of fabricated steelwork, optimisation of inspection requirements and management of compliance risks based on big data analysis.

This research involves a collaboration with the Laboratory for Industry 4.0 Smart Manufacturing Systems (LISMS) from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Auckland.

From this, several student projects have commenced, including:

  • the future of welding;
  • inspection of welded components;
  • comparison of robotic welding programming strategies; and
  • the creation of a welding 4.0 demonstration laboratories.

Following on from the automation audits, we’ve also conducted an industry 4.0 readiness assessment via surveys and company visits. A common theme was that companies are closely monitoring the developments around Industry 4.0 and in the automation space.

While most have already taken some steps towards a digital underpinned fabrication some are holding back to better understand the implication.

The findings of the assessments will be used in the roadmap to Industry 4.0 for NZ metal fabricators, and so far some of the research findings have been published in a previewed international paper.