UK tech incubator sets up Industry 4.0 demo labs to show LoRa based IoT solutions
UK tech incubator Digital Catapult is sponsoring a pair of UK firms to set up as Industry 4.0 showcase labs for the rest of the UK manufacturing industry.
County Durham based fabrication and machining firm Dyer Engineering, and Hereford based superalloy manufacturer Special Metals Wiggin have been selected for the twin connected factory demonstrators.
The idea is they demonstrate the potential of industrial networking, edge, and analytics solutions to unlock productivity, streamline processes, improve yield and increase quality control.
They will engage with UK startups, as well, to explore new internet-of-things (IoT) solutions running on low-power wide-area (LPWA) networks – with a focus on challenges related to process measurement, optimisation and control, as well as indoor tracking for the location of assets, equipment and components.
Digital Catapult has launched an open call to find innovative startups working with IoT and LPWAN technologies. Startups have been invited to apply online.
Digital Catapult has meshed its Things Connected LoRaWAN network with the UK footprint of Amsterdam-based LoRaWAN project The Things Network (TTN) to create a more extensive, free-to-use LPWA network for IoT developers. The combined network covers at least 400 base stations in the UK.
Jeremy Silver, chief executive at Digital Catapult, said: “The impact of advanced digital technologies cannot be underestimated… This project will show how, by utilising technology to help innovation flourish, businesses can expect to see numerous practical benefits, from improved processes to better quality control.”
Richard Larder, operations manager at Dyer Engineering, said: “Adopting industrial digital technology is of paramount importance to safeguard UK manufacturing for generations to come. We have benefited from the technological pioneers before us and now feel it is our time to pick up the mantle and take on the challenges and risks of significant change, and we are truly up for it.”
Jonathan Silk, technical director at Special Metals Wiggin, said: “By introducing state-of-the-art wireless technology we will make significant advancements in process control and asset tracking. This will enhance our position in a highly competitive worldwide market for the supply of nickel alloys. We look forward to the opportunity of working with Digital Catapult and the solution providers.”