Zhongce Rubber Group (ZC Rubber) plans to use 5G technology to promote data network platform innovation and data-driven production process reengineering. It will enhance the core competitiveness and corporate value through network collaboration, flexible production, and service extension and create a replicable 5G Smart Factory platform for the tire industry.
ZC Rubber's 5G Smart Factory will respond to the three new manufacturing trends in the tire industry: mass customization, small-batch production, and unpredictable supply-chain disruption management. It will drive the business to transform from traditional B2M (Business-to-Manufacturer) to C2M (Customer-to-Manufacturer) and realize smart production and lean management through the Industrial Internet and the Internet of Things.
AR-Aided Equipment Maintenance:
More efficient equipment maintenance through human-machine collaboration
Through AR-aided (Augmented-Reality-Aided) maintenance, our operators can provide visual guidance on equipment maintenance without much relevant knowledge in advance. Even some junior operators can quickly and accurately determine the condition of the equipment and complete the maintenance under the guidance of AR. The goal is to maintain equipment at a lower cost and higher efficiency and strengthen process reliability and standardization.
Faster decisions and actions via remote control
The smart monitoring system in ZC Rubber's smart factory features 4K/8K HD video recording and real-time analytics based on 5G and machine vision technology. For example, in equipment troubleshooting, operators can request guidance from remote experts at any time. The expert team can perform playback, screenshots, and on-demand video signals and send guidance combined with images and voice to the site. Experts can also use various gestures, handles, keyboards, etc., to issue instructions to control the robot's operation. Smart monitoring will benefit the entire production network with faster decisions and actions to improve the operation process and increase productivity through automation.
Improved workflow efficiency and worker safety
The indoor positioning system can display the real-time location of personnel, issue safety warnings, and conduct the emergency evacuation. This system will help realize indoor navigation, personnel asset management, behavior analysis, etc., thereby helping our factory save costs, improve service and management efficiency, and reduce or even avoid accidents.
Enhanced equipment life and factory safety
The intelligent early warning system will be established to accurately determine the operating conditions of plant equipment, allowing the equipment lifespan to be optimized to its fullest. Combined with data research, it can also provide a comprehensive assessment of the operation conditions of plant machinery and equipment, which helps the factory discover the hidden dangers in time. This process, in the long run, will significantly improve working conditions and increase safety.
Key Performance Forecast:
Compared with traditional factories, ZC Rubber's 5G smart factory is expected to achieve a 50% reduction in the product development cycle, a 15% increase in production efficiency, a 40% reduction in product defect rate, a 30% reduction in loss rate, and a 5% reduction in energy consumption. In addition, the 5G smart factory will also change the original labor-intensive model, and the number of workers will be reduced by about 70% compared with traditional factories.
As the tire company ranked No. 1 in China and No. 9 in the world, ZC Rubber has been actively exploring the digital transformation and upgrading of the tire industry. Since 2016, ZC Rubber has introduced the ET Industrial Brain to create an Industry 4.0 Intelligent Manufacturing System and has achieved breakthrough development. With the dedication to 5G technology, ZC Rubber is committed to improving the production capacity and efficiency of the factory. At the same time, there will be considerable improvements in product quality and production costs to provide our customers with better products and services.
*This ZC Rubber 5G Smart Factory project is in progress and has not yet been officially implemented. It will be implemented on our pilot factory, the Future Factory, which is currently under construction. And the technology of this project will be promoted and applied to more of our factories later on.