Rob Walker and I took a trip down to Autodesk University 2018 in London this summer. It was a great opportunity to connect with the best in the business, share technical knowledge, and gain a deeper understanding of cross-industry potential. Plus, a chance to share best practices, stay on top of the latest trends, and experience advanced technology firsthand.
As part of that theme, we wanted to share some of the work that’s been ongoing with Autodesk Fusion Production and had organized a class that we delivered together titled “The Path to Smart Manufacturing: Introducing Fusion Production”
The class introduced common trends of smart manufacturing as we see them today in industry, but more importantly showed how Fusion Production can give contract manufacturers and job shops a digital workflow to begin or get on the path to smart manufacturing.
A key theme was how establishing a connected network of processes within a shop-floor environment gives an overview of performance data and enables that data to be shared in upstream processes to unify the disciplines of design and manufacturing. The convergence of design and manufacturing was a bigger topic at the event and formed the basis to many discussions, so this aspect resonated well with the audience of our class.
We showed a simple workflow of a fictitious contract manufacturer moving from paper to digital processes. It started in CAD, moved to CAM, and ended with production management within Fusion Production.
This involved showing how we create and populate digital work instructions for process definition, monitor jobs status on the shop-floor, and perform CNC machine monitoring.
Finally, we discussed the importance of closing the loop to production processes. We showed how production data can be fed back into design and manufacturing teams to identify under-performing processes and help them to make informed decisions to improve the return on their existing assets.