GAMS preview: The IT/OT convergence
In preparation for the 2016 GAMS Conference on Sept. 14 in Chicago, CFE Media asked our panelists to discuss some of the key issues facing manufacturing. This is one in a daily series of articles.
The 2016 Global Automation and Manufacturing Summit (GAMS), presented by CFE Media, will bring together experts from all areas of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) to look at not just the current state of IIoT but also at the potential benefits of deployment for the manufacturing industry.
The third GAMS conference takes place Wednesday, Sept. 14, beginning at noon. It is held in conjunction with the Industrial Automation North America (IANA) pavilion at the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show at McCormick Place in Chicago. The event is co-presented by Hannover Fairs USA.
In preparation for the 2016 GAMS Conference, CFE Media asked our panelists to discuss some of the key issues facing manufacturing. This is one in a daily series of articles leading up to this year's conference:
CFE Media: We've seen a traditional separation between information technology (IT) and operations technology (OT) in the plant. The emergence of IIoT promises to change that. Why is this important?
Carpenter: The interesting thing is neither the traditional IT nor the traditional OT teams can implement IIoT initiatives on their own. As more systems move to cloud or cloud/edge infrastructures, the IT and OT leaders need to form more of a strategic partnership in order to take full advantage.
The OT leaders know the equipment and potential benefits analytics could bring. The IT leaders are more familiar with the new technologies around Big Data, cloud, security and machine learning techniques. The partnership is very critical.
McGreevy: These systems often are managed by different departments with different budgets and objectives. This creates conflict. IIoT offers manufacturers an opportunity to break down the virtual "walls" between these systems by offering direct access to equipment, systems and data. Process improvement can thereby be implemented faster, accelerating change through the IIoT applications that can harness it.
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Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey