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The rapid digitalization in energy, oil and gas, manufacturing, and mining is pressing the need to build sustainable digital solutions that supplement and solve upcoming unique digital challenges. Heavy industries are coping and leveraging the advantages of adopting the new AI-infused industrial automation to stay at the edge of advanced industrial engineering.

What is Industry 4.0?

Industry 4.0 is the buzzword that keeps fuelling the thoughts on AI-assisted industrial automation that uses the power of Big Data, Cloud Computing, and Distributed storage technology and makes data movement and storage easier. The perfect combination of this class of Cloud solutions with AI and Machine Learning is shaping the new technology revolution in the industrial automation segment. 

The new advancements such as Driverless cars, Robotic Manufacturing, Remote Asset monitoring, and automated mineral mapping in fields like automobile, process engineering, mining, and natural resource planning are gaining considerable attention through AI enabled or assisted services in the future.

Digital Twins and Industry Automation

Digital Twin is an age-old concept and has been there since NASA sent its first space exploration missions, however, the way Digital Twins are built now and operated has developed in leaps and bounds. Every industrial asset, transportation system, and communication system supports Digital Twin to help understand, analyze, and simulate the system for its optimal asset life and performance.

Some of the applications where Digital Twin concept assists or automates processes are,

  1. Monitoring industrial equipment (assets)
  2. Helps in predictive maintenance
  3. Learn system functioning using the performance track
  4. Identify system hierarchy and process control

Digital Twin makes life easier for the proactive maintenance of industrial assets eliminating preventive maintenance tasks. Does adding Digital Twin make Industrial processes automatic? Or what else it takes? Digital Twins are evolving continuously and recently are integrated with visualization platforms.

Twin Central is a new revolutionary Digital Twin technology platform built in line with the current trends in Digital Twin market space and comes with integrated support for Data Integration and Visualisation capabilities.

Twin Solutions

Industries opt for automation despite its complexity in implementation or switching from traditional systems, for two reasons, 

  1. Reduce the cost of plant operation 
  2. Improve quality and quantity of industrial production. 

However, there is no single-size fit for all, and solutions are tailor-made to address the specific industry use cases.

Mining Twins

Digital twins in the mining industry help understand fleet operations in real-time and plan the loading and unloading of mining trucks effectively. A remote monitoring device fitted on the mining trucks captures the vehicle’s status 24/7 as data points later fed back into its Digital Twin (virtual model) to simulate the running conditions of the mining truck.

It enables real-time fleet management and plans mineral transport routes to reduce the re-fuelling, increase truck run-time and remove redundant stops or flat tire conditions, which ensures 100% fleet uptime.

Manufacturing Twins

Raw material sourcing and Waste management are crucial aspects in production planning, since the cost of procuring and transporting raw materials is daunting. A manufacturing Twin keeps a virtual model of the shop floor operations and constantly updates model parameters based on real-time data ingested from IoT sensors. Every stage, starting from raw material pre-processing, material treatment, and logistics gets synchronized with the corresponding Digital Twin, and plant parameters are analyzed in real-time.

Anomalies like equipment malfunction, quality issues, and workplace safety are visible in real-time; a pro-active lean manufacturing workflow is then adopted after real-time analysis of the Digital Twin’s response to these anomalies.

Energy, Oil and Gas Twins

Building a Digital twin for the most demanding industry segment is a challenge at stake. Digital Twin solution for Energy, Oil and Gas systems demands fail-safe design with high accuracy to simulate the working conditions and analyze its performance. 

With the aging crew in the energy, oil and gas industry, it is necessary to enhance the adaptation of Digital Twin beyond what is present now. There is an acute skill shortage in operations where human intervention is impossible. Virtual simulations and analysis are the game changers in model drilling and extraction activities. Using Digital Twin reduces the field operation costs and the dependence of human presence in remote inaccessible areas.

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