The small island of Batam in Indonesia’s Riau Islands, which is just a short boat ride from Singapore, is now home to a Schneider Electric smart factory and aims to become a kick starter for companies in Asia for Industrial internet of things (IIoT) initiatives.
Xavier Denoly, Country President Schneider Electric Indonesia, said that the facility is a testbed for machine learning, artificial intelligence (AI), predictive and digital maintenance, connected machines and processes.
“The integration of big data, cloud and IIoT technology will pave the way for organizations in Asia to work towards their smart factory vision, becoming more energy efficient and sustainable in the long term,” he said in a media statement.
Since it is both a working factory and a showcase for customers and partners, the Bantam facility has been visited by more than 150 customers and partners from Indonesia, China, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Myanmar, and the Middle East, according to Schneider.
Hence, it has comprehensively deployed a wide range of IIoT technologies and introduced digital tools such as virtual and augmented reality.
Among these technologies is EcoStruxure Machine, Schneider Electric’s proprietary IoT-enabled, plug-and-play, open, interoperable architecture and platform that provides real-time tracking of the performance of its operations and machine as well as preventive maintenance needs.
This allows plant managers to shorten reaction times to issues in the manufacturing shop floor. Schneider claims that for its own use, the Batam plant has, thus far, seen a reduction in 17% man-hours spent on maintenance and 46% waste material.
“We strongly believe in the value of smart factories and ensure our own factories are equipped with the latest IIoT technologies to spearhead the new Industry 4.0 era,” Denoly said.
Schneider Electric said that it has been a working partner of the Ministry of Industry of the Republic of Indonesia for the development and implementation of Industry 4.0 since November 2018 and Batam smart factory has just received an award from Ministry of Industry of Republic Indonesia as “A National Lighthouse for Indonesia.”
The smart factory in Batam is just one of Schneider Electric’s smart factory showcases around the world, which includes China, France, Philippines, North America, and India.
In the Batam smart factory, Schneider Electric employs 2,900 people across its network of plants where they manufacture a wide range of products distributed globally. The three sites have also been certified with international standards ISO 9001, ISO 14001, and OHSAS 18001.
“We understand that it is not easy for organizations to take the first step towards IIoT. However, our Batam smart factory can serve as a best practice and example of the benefits of digitizing energy management and automation in the manufacturing industry and help organizations to get started on their digitization journey,” said Sirichai Chongchintaraksa, VP Supply Chain Performance East Asia Japan Pacific Schneider Electric.
According to Sirichai, digital transformation empowers real-time tracking of operations performance from shop floor to top floor — gaining visibility on machine performance, preventive maintenance needs, process quality control compliance, process drifts, energy management and most activities you can find in a manufacturing shop floor.
The return on investment of such technologies varies from less than six months up to two years.
“To give one specific example the return on investment of the deployment of EcoStruxure for one of our electromechanical production lines was less than six months. Thanks to 46% wasted material reduction. Maintenance man-hours decreased up to 17%, and it took us less than a month to implement it,” he said.