The challenges and rapid changes that characterize the modern business environment lay bare the inflexibility of many manufacturers’ operations. For more than a decade, Industry 4.0 and smart manufacturing concepts and initiatives have arisen to help combat these issues. New technologies,such as cloud, AI and edge computing, which have completely changed the IT landscape have accelerated their impact. Yet their full potential has yet to be realized as manufacturers continue to struggle to scale these advances throughout their operations.
Most industrial enterprises have implemented pilots or proofs of concept with Industry 4.0 technologies but have been unable to meaningfully expand these projects through out their plants and across locations. In many cases, these projects, intended to address specific issues, may even add more complexity to an already complicated heterogeneous environment.
A more holistic, technology platform approach is required. Enterprises must begin with the end in mind, with a vision for an open, flexible, integrated and AI-infused architecture that’s designed to scale. This approach doesn’t mean that high return on investment (ROI), quick-win technology projects shouldn’t be pursued. But rather, that they should be implemented with a broader understanding of architectural decisions within the context of a platform approach. In this way, isolated initiatives will contribute to the big picture: a fully modern digital manufacturing environment.
IBM brings hybrid cloud technologies to the factory floor
IBM’s extensive work with industrial clients has taught us that manufacturers need a guiding architecture. This blueprint for digital transformation provides the foresight to pull together the patch work of good intentions that exists across manufacturing plants today into a bold, unified vision for modern manufacturing. IBM’s architecture for manufacturing is driven by the goal of improving operations’ flexibility and guided by the principle of acting where the action is.
IBM’s hybrid cloud approach is uniquely open and provides a security-rich, industrial-ready foundation for manufacturers. It’s grounded on a common, industry standard platform for data, applications and cybersecurity, built on the Red Hat® OpenShift® Platform with Kubernetes containers. Our open hybrid cloud enables you to manage and run applications on your choice of public cloud, on-premises systems in your plant or on edge computing devices. IBM uniquely offers an on-premises cloud option, so you get all the modern tech advantages while keeping manufacturing data under your direct control.
IBM’s architecture brings hybrid cloud technologies to the action in each level of manufacturing.
IBM hybrid Cloud Platform
Enterprise level ISA95-levels 4, 5
Wide area network
Plan levelISA95-level 3
local area network
Shopfloor ISA-96-levels 0, 1, 2
Process control netwrork
Three-Tier Manufacturing Topology
Our open architecture embraces the manufacturing ecosystem of operational technology (OT) vendors, industry independent software vendors (ISVs) and systems integrators(SIs). This architecture protects your current investments and allows you to continue to grow your business with the offerings and experience of leading OT vendors and others in the manufacturing ecosystem.
IBM Services® helps clients co-create intelligent workflows with preconfigured industry solutions and tools for automation and integration. With the IBM Garage™ methodology for Industry 4.0, IBM can help you define your vision and co-create a blueprint to achieve it. With a focus on using your existing OT and systems investments, use cases with the most important metrics and highest ROI are targeted first.