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Posted on : Saturday 7th March 2020 01:03 PM

Rockwell Automation Releases AI Module to Improve Industrial Production

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MILWAUKEE, April 29, 2019 — Industrial workers can now more easily use the data from their hardware to forecast production dilemmas and enhance processes with their present automation and control skill set. The new FactoryTalk Analytics LogixAI module, originally recognized as Project Sherlock, uses artificial intelligence (AI) to detect production anomalies and alert workers so they can investigate or intervene, as necessary.


Many existing analytics technologies require deep expertise in both data science and industrial processes. But this add-on module for ControlLogix controllers reduces that burden by doing the job of a data scientist. It fits directly into a control chassis and streams controller data over the backplane to construct predictive models. It can constantly monitor a production operation, detecting anomalies against its derived understanding.


"The FactoryTalk Analytics LogixAI module makes predictive analytics more available to help more workers make better production decisions," said Jonathan Wise, product manager, Rockwell Automation. "The module learns your ControlLogix application and tells operators and technicians when things are changing in unexpected ways. This can help them get in advance of product quality issues and protect process integrity."


For example, the module can help operators spot performance deviations in equipment like mixers that could alter product quality or lead to downtime. It can also be applied as a virtual sensor. Instead of workers taking a reading, like the humidity of a manufactured food product, the module can analyze variables from line assets like sprayers, dryers and burners to predict a measurement, virtually.


Workers can then be notified of problems by configuring alarms on a human machine interface (HMI) or dashboard. Future features of the module will go further, helping workers focus their problem-solving or automate the optimization of a process.


The FactoryTalk Analytics LogixAI module is the best addition to the FactoryTalk Analytics portfolio from Rockwell Automation. The portfolio includes FactoryTalk Analytics for Devices, which learns about an automation system's structure to tell workers about problems with individual devices. The LogixAI module expands on this by learning about an automation system's application and helping identify anomalies with its overall function.


Both products work individually, but each will benefit the other in future iterations. The FactoryTalk Analytics platform aggregates multiple sources of data, so workers can discover new insights. FactoryTalk Analytics for Devices and the LogixAI module will both be data sources for the platform going forward.

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