Today’s fabricating machines, with their embedded technologies like cameras, sensors, and automated controls, generate a lot of data. Whereas yesterday’s machines created and used data such as X, Y, Z position and strokes or cycle completions, today torrents of data are generated, directed, collected, stored, and processed all day long.
Enter AMADA Influent.
Influent helps you navigate the seas and rivers of data that are flowing through your fabricating
company. Rather than you serving the data, the data serves you. In fact, one of the best things about an Influent implementation is moving from the past—using for example, the location or cycle information to show what had already happened—to the present and future. Influent can show you what is happening live on the shop floor, and it can even help predict what is going to happen.
Additionally, Influent makes it apparent that by using your own data in the best possible way, you can adjust your approach that have obvious effects on your business metrics. You see the improvements first-hand in areas like estimating, costing, accounting, logistics—any “office” function involved.
An introduction to Influent
AMADA Influent is a multi-purpose management system for your fabricating company, equally useful to OEMs and job shops. Security concerns are minimal because Influent is a system that resides on a server on your own premises; cloud-based vulnerabilities are nonexistent. It uses off-the-shelf hardware solutions to give access across a wide variety of people and purposes. And it puts the data where it will be most helpful to each role.
Companies that utilize an Influent implementation can expect the following things:
One of the benefits of using Influent is that being programmed using microservice architecture, the tasks Influent does are separated out into microservices. Most software has a monolithic architecture, meaning the application contains all that the software does. If only one piece of the software is extremely busy, then the entire software program is busy. With microservice architecture, each microservice is autonomous and specialized. For example, a microservice that collects posts on a website is independent from the database microservice that assigns posts to records.
In the Influent world, this means low- or no-disruption updates and upgrades when advancements are made in one of the microservice areas, keeping you up and running at the maximum level. Additionally, high utilization on one microservice does not affect any other microservice.
In terms of hardware, nothing exotic is required. A Windows server 2016 or later, with a quad core with a terabyte of hard drive and 24 gigs of RAM will do the job very well. Influent is a web app—maybe more an intranet app since you will not need to go beyond your walls. It is not a resource-heavy piece of software.
Using it requires even less of hardware; using Influent is like loading a web page. Desktops, laptops, and tablets like the iPad are used easily in this environment. Additionally, you can create Influent dashboards right on the shop floor or in the office using an AppleTV device and a 4K monitor.
Two levels of management
Influent is available in two levels. Influent Monitor and Influent Enterprise. To have a simple, useful, and information-packed management system that looks at your AMADA equipment, Influent Monitor is the right choice. It connects automatically to AMADA machines going back to the AMNC PC software.
Influent Monitor manages the machine status, the job status and progress, and it keeps track of alarms, machine setups, and history metrics. Some of the ways this translates to real life and real management are being able to determine which machines to use on certain jobs, the overall health of a machine (or the overall capability of a shift), and a history of green light time, utilization, efficiency, and many more aspects of machine use and management. The fact that so many machine metrics are available in real time lets you react immediately to any problems.
The higher level of management builds on Influent Monitor and is called Influent Enterprise. Influent Enterprise, like Monitor, connects AMADA equipment. It also connects other brands of fabrication machines, machining centers, programming systems, and location tracking systems. Sensors, standalone workstations (like welding workstations), and even employees can be tracked using Influent Enterprise.
Perhaps one of the most important aspects of Influent Enterprise is that it seamlessly connects to your company’s ERP/MRP system. It supports bidirectional integration with synchronization between Influent Enterprise and your ERP/MRP software.
Flexibility is baked into Influent Enterprise. The main part of its design is to be a customizable solution for any customer. Influent Enterprise also has rules-based notifications (e-mail in Situation A, escalate e-mail in Situation B) and rules-based machine target thresholds.
Tech expertise spawns business gains
A management system ought to benefit as many people as possible, and everyone involved should see the business gains from the technical results. It might look like this with Influent:
There are many more situations like these that affect logistics, purchasing, maintenance—name the department and likely they will feel the improvements promised in a well-managed environment like Influent.
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