The digital world where we live, it’s not only used in our personal lives. Businesses and factories can also benefit from those digital tools that we have. One big benefit from digitalization and high computer process capacity is that we can replicate the reality in a virtual world and see what happens when we change some parameters. This appears to be very futuristic, but in factories, it is already on the way. We call it factory simulation.

In a factory simulation, all the factory conditions are replicated and introduced into a digital world where we have the flexibility to analyze, change and see the results without any risk. You can foresee the huge benefits it can introduce in companies, from the big factories to the ones that are still on paper. From manufacturing costs reduction and efficiency to set up times reduction and stocks minimization, the list of benefits is huge and is available to all companies in this digital age.

originalImage from Siemens

The factory simulation can be applied to a lot of situations like:

·        Evaluation of a product change in manufacturing process;

·        Evaluation of equipment and staff necessities;

·        Evaluate the effect of a new equipment;

·        Remove bottlenecks from manufacturing process;

·        Introduce stock policies;

·        Improve product delivery dates;

·        Improve machines reliability and optimize team size.

For new factories, in addition to the outputs shown above, simulation can also be used to define the quantity and types of machines we will use, achieve the optimal factory floor layout and set-up the ideal stock size for all the parts and consumables.

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At this stage, you could be thinking in the big quantity of variables that exist in a manufacturing process and the difficult it is to put all inside a digital environment. Yes, it’s true and that’s why it’s necessary to conduct a previous approach with all the people involved and do a sensibility analysis to obtain the points in the production process that care for more detailing. The detail of the information introduced can be from the tall, weight and fitness of the workers to the time it takes the crane to elevate a specified piece.

The digital world brings a lot of benefits to industrial companies. Factory simulation is one of them with a lot of proven benefits for every company stage. It can empower companies for an efficient and risk control factory.