industry 4.0

Industry 4.0, two



fulfill process indistinguishable
path injector accompany
fuel spot (2) mass products
spray engrave ambiguous
access ensure by means
vast defect vulnerable
stable average espionage
steer logistic competitor
flow overall stock (2)
ware assembly superfluous
unique qualified administer
identify generate carry out
precise automatic





These parts are indistinguishable mass products — that is until a laser engraves a code on them, giving each part a label, an identity that will determine its path through the production process.

We’ll accompany an injector on its journey in the Bosch factory.

Finally, it will fulfill its purpose to spray diesel fuel into a truck engine.

Andreas Muller, Bosch Project Manager: “The injector’s unambiguous number now clearly identifies it, wherever it is. The injector does not carry any additional information with it.

But its number connects it with information in the computer systems. And this ensures that whenever I spot the injector, I can access all the information on it that I need.”

As assembly continues, the injector and others like it are automatically kept under constant control, also by means of a high-speed camera.

Vast amounts of data are constantly traveling throughout the factory.

This is a zero defect system — mistakes are recognized immediately and corrected.

But how stable is a system that depends on so much data?

Thorsten Dahl, Production Forman: “In my area, we have very few problems. It’s no secret that we average two server crashes a year.”

Almost all the data about the injector can also be accessed through the internet . . . that makes Bosch vulnerable to industrial espionage.

For example, a competitor could learn how many parts a particular customer has ordered.

Andreas Muller, Bosch Project Manager: “An essential element is that we as Bosch administer our data independently and under our control.

This ensures that no outsider can access this data — unless we have a corresponding agreement.”

Radio signals automatically keep track of which injectors are completed and ready for shipping.

The factory’s entire logistic system is steered by radio. That makes it easier to get an overall picture of the flow of wares and thus reduce warehouse stock by 30%.

Machines and products are increasingly communicating among themselves.

Without people.

So will the human worker become superfluous when technology can organize itself in the industry version of 4.0?

Andreas Muller, Bosch Project Manager: “In the context of industry 4.0, people will find new tasks. There will be people creating the rules for machines so that they are able to communicate in the first place.

And these will be highly qualified tasks. And we’ll still need employees to carry out activities that are complex and cannot be carried out by machines.”

From the Bosch factory in Hamborg in southwestern Germany, the injectors are sent to the customers. For example, to the car manufacturer, Daimler Benz, where the injectors also exchange information with other machines.

Andreas Muller, Bosch Project Manager: “We deliver our products to our customers. And they use them in their manufacturing process.

This assembly generates an automatic signal that we receive through the internet. And then we know what parts to produce.”

That tells the Bosch factory precisely what parts are necessary to fill the customers’ needs.

And a new injector with a unique identity, begins its journey.

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1. All the injectors in the Bosch factory are unique. Is this true or false? How do they have their own identity?

2. Why do the injectors have their own unique identity code? What is the purpose?

3. Are there any disadvantages or drawbacks of this Industry 4.0 System? How are they counteracting this?

4. Human workers will become redundant in the future. Yes, no, yes and no, maybe, it depends?

5. Where will the injectors ultimately go to? What is its final destination?

6. Is there a feedback loop or mechanism involved?
A. What are some factories in your city? What do they produce?

B. Have factories and manufacturing changed over the decades? How have they changed?

C. Are factory jobs being lost or is there a demand for more factory workers?

D. Do or would you or your friends like to work in a factory?

E. What will things be like in the future?

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