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Two New Devices Focus on Securely Accessing Data in Legacy Machines

April 202016 | Brett Brune | Smart Manufacturing magazine

A trio of Mazak, Memex and Cisco is beginning to sell SmartBox, a device meant to securely manage manufacturing data—information on axes, spindles, temperatures, cutting times, downtimes and part counts, for starters—culled from machines that have been laboring in a sort of silence for decades. At the same time, a pairing of Forcam and Wago plans to release a similar device it calls the PFC100 Industrial MTConnect device before July.

SmartBox uses I/O links to connect machines and produces MTConnect code in real time. It can use an adapter board from Memex and must be connected to a Cisco router, John Rattray, VP of sales and marketing at Memex, said in an interview with Smart Manufacturing magazine at the MC2 conference in Dallas. It can also use Memex’s factory- and machine-shop-floor-monitoring software, Merlin, to map existing signals and analyze and correlate the data so shops and plants can use it to improve productions.

Companies in the aerospace, defense and medical industries welcome the Cisco router requirement because it assuages their network security concerns, he added.

“We’re talking about IP connections in terms of Ethernet connections,” Rattray said. “You don’t need to have all the security in there to make the connection work. However, one customer of ours, DP Tool in New York, had experienced a situation where a guy who was maintaining a machine put in a USB stick into it and a virus on this USB stick spread to the company’s manufacturing network and whole admin network. It cost the company an enormous amount of effort and grief to get that fixed. You can run without security switches. But smart manufacturers are recognizing we need to secure and lock down our shop floor networks.”

The SmartBox has a “level three” managed switch that will shut the device down automatically if a USB stick comes its way or someone unplugs a particular Ethernet connection, Rattray added.

The emerging device from Forcam and Wago has a combined MTConnect adapter and agent inside the device, as well as a built-in security firewall for cybersecurity, Forcam USA Inc. CEO Mohamed Abuali said. He demonstrated a simulation model at MC2, saying it cost less than the trio’s device.

The Forcam/Wago product will cost less than $1,000, he said. And the Mazak/Memex/Cisco device will cost $4,000 on the low end but could be used on four machines, Mazak President Brian Papke said.

Companies using legacy CNCs will soon be able to choose between bolting their new data-retrieving device together with a Cisco network router or a “quicker solution that can connect to any network,” Abuali said. “The alternative [to these two options] is you have to retrofit the machine and upgrade the controller, which can cost thousands of dollars. In many cases, you cannot even retrofit.”

Both devices are intended to help manufacturers around the world connect their machines securely to a network. About 14.5 million machines still lack connectivity, Rattray said.

Of course, the idea is to then analyze the data to make the best decisions possible about manufacturing and machining processes. And some of those decisions can be made without human involvement, to be sure: “For instance, if a temperature sensor starts to rise above a threshold limit, the machine can send an alert and notify people before it fails,” he added.

Merlin lets companies “take data and make it manageable,” said Papke, who serves on the board for MTConnect. Otherwise, companies end up with “digital exhaust.”

“Forcam wants to define real-time production—from any machine of any age,” Abuali said. “That’s a critical state.”

Memex Chief Technology Officer Dave Edstrom is “very pleased to see more of these type boxes come out—because, as the saying goes, a rising tide lifts all ships,” he said.

But he couldn’t stop himself from making a quick comparison with the offering from Forcam/Wago: “The integration of what Mazak is doing with the SmartBox, with Memex and Cisco—making it easier to connect—will resonate very well with manufacturing. You don’t have to sell someone on Memex’s ability to connect anything. And you don’t have to sell anyone on Cisco’s ability to network a lot of devices together and do it securely. So that’s why we think SmartBox is a game-changer.”

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Memex Inc. (OEE) has Products Revolutionizing the Industrial Internet of Things

Stephen L Kanaval |

Overall Equipment Effectiveness is maybe not a phrase you hear that often, but if you manage a shop or a work site, you know exactly what it means. It means that your machines on your floor are running at peak performance. Memex Inc. (OEE) understands this so well that they made it their stock symbol. So, how does Memex do this? The company has created a manufacturing execution system called MERLIN OEE. The MERLIN OEE system is connected directly to the machines on the floor and offers live results and a constantly updating dashboard of metrics. Memex’s MERLIN OEE is all about a company using the machines that they have and making them better by finding the hidden areas of profit loss.

The creation of this unique system has allowed Memex to have four straight quarters of revenue growth. Meme produced a gross margin of $375,000, which was 27% higher than the same quarter in 2015 (cited from press release here). The industrial internet of all things is coming, and if you read Equities.com frequently you know that there are disruptive products out there. Memex is one of these companies that understands how to bridge the last twenty years with the next fifty years. The MERLIN OEE takes older machines and adapts them with software and shows areas where the machine can be improved. These analytics can save companies a lot of money. As a matter of fact here is what Memex says about that:

MERLIN delivers a 10%-50% average productivity increase, and earns 20%-plus profit improvement based on just a 10% increase in OEE. It consistently achieves payback in less than four months with an Internal Rate of Return (IRR) greater than 300%, and connects to any machine, old or new, utilizing native MTConnect, other protocols or MERLIN hardware adapters for older machines

Memex has important alliances with Cisco and Mazak. In addition, the MERLIN OEE has been proven in plants like Milwaukee Tool, Magellan Aerospace, Aero Pacific, and many more. And just think, there are over 16 million Computerized Numerical Control (CNC) machine tools installed world wide, what do you think Memex could do for all those companies with its machine monitoring software?

DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of equities.com. Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions. To read our full disclosure, please go to: http://www.equities.com/disclaimer

 

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MEMEX Launches MERLIN OPTime — a FREE Real-Time Dashboard for Manufacturing Analytics

BURLINGTON, ON–(Marketwired – Apr 26, 2016) – MEMEX Inc. (TSX VENTURE: OEE) announces the launch of MERLIN OPTime, a free Real-Time dashboard application for MTConnect® enabled devices. Connecting MERLIN OPTime to MTConnect® enabled machines on the shop floor will allow manufacturers to receive Real-Time manufacturing analytics on an informative, dynamic dashboard. With OEE becoming more critical, MERLIN OPTime offers manufacturers an opportunity to take their first step towards IIoT and smart manufacturing, seeding the market and subsequently driving demand for more feature rich paid versions of MERLIN, all in due course.
MERLIN OPTime is easy to install and use software that reads MTConnect® tags along with offering users the capability to add and display multiple devices/agents, and configure an event to reflect if a machine is running or not. The information rich dashboard also empowers users to assess machine utilization on an 8-hour rolling trend chart that can be viewed on any device such as a smartphone. MERLIN OPTime allows users to:

Assess Machine State: Provides dynamic color feedback on machines uptime and downtime states.
Measure Machine Utilization: Enables both current and trend machine utilization.
Identify Bottlenecks: Enables users the ability to quickly identify machine problems and potential bottlenecks by providing the current state of MTConnect® enabled devices.
Recognize Optimization Opportunities: Analysis of the utilization trends provide an objective comparison of operation time which can bring to light optimization opportunities that exist to boost productivity.

“With MERLIN OPTime, users can experience the potential of data-driven manufacturing with no initial monetary investment,” said Dave Edstrom, CTO at MEMEX Inc., “I believe MERLIN OPTime will dramatically shorten the time that manufacturers will spend learning to appreciate the importance of Real-Time shop-floor information, as well as the tremendous benefits of MTConnect® — the interconnectivity standard.”

About MEMEX

MEMEX Inc., the developer of MERLIN, an award winning IIoT technology platform that delivers tangible increases in manufacturing productivity in Real-Time, is the global leader in machine to machine connectivity solutions. Committed to its mission of “Successfully transforming factories of today into factories of the future” and encouraged by the rapid adoption and success of MERLIN, MEMEX is relentlessly pursuing the development of increasingly innovative solutions suitable in the IIoT era. MEMEX envisions converting every machine into a node on the corporate network, thereby, creating visibility from shop-floor-to-top-floor. MEMEX, with its deep commitment towards machine connectivity, offers solutions that are focused on finding hidden capacity by measuring and managing Real-Time data. This empowers MEMEX’s customers to effectively quantify and manage OEE, reduce costs and incorporate strategies for continuous lean improvement.

CONTACT INFORMATION
Media Contact:
David McPhail
CEO
Phone: 519-993-1114
Email: david.mcphail@MemexOEE.com

Rashi Rathore
Communication Coordinator
Phone: 905-635-3040 ext 103
Email: Rashi.Rathore@MemexOEE.com

Learn More about MERLIN OPTime

Get MERLIN OPTime

 

MEMEX @ Mfg4

Mfg4 is the most efficient way for you to see and evaluate the latest Aerospace, Defense, and Medical manufacturing technologies The aerospace, defense, and medical device industries share similar challenges: long project lifecycles, stringent regulations, mission-critical quality control, and a vital need for advanced manufacturing technologies.

Attending Mfg4 2016 provides a unique opportunity to explore the methods and products that are working in these industries and discover how they can be adapted and implemented within your operation. Collaborate with suppliers who already understand the challenges your firm faces and have proven solutions you can put to use immediately.

Nearly every hour on the show floor, professional presentations will provide important insights into each featured industry. Attend keynotes presented by industry leaders and hear how the technologies on the exhibit floor are tackling production issues in innovative ways during the Information Interchange

Attend the MEMEX sponsored smart manufacturing panel along with hearing from industry leaders on topics vital to industry manufacturers, network with peers and find ideas and solutions you didn’t even know you needed.

Meet up with MEMEX representative and discover what the Brilliant Factory means for you along with the tools you need to plan and execute successful strategies for your own digital factory of the future.

Date: 3rd – 5th May, 2016

Time:  Tuesday, May 3

10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Wednesday, May 4

10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Thursday, May 5

10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m

Venue: Connecticut Convention Center

100 Columbus Boulevard

Hartford, CT 06103

 

Learn more about Mfg4

Register for Mfg4

DISCOVER MORE WITH MAZAK MIDWEST

Explore how today’s advanced metalworking technologies and data-driven production strategies contribute to unprecedented productivity gains and improved quality management.

From models with simple, but innovative milling and turning capabilities to advanced manufacturing cell solutions, MAZAK will run part cutting demonstrations on more than 20 of their newest machine tools. Several of the multi-axis machines on display will feature Mazak’s new SMOOTH TECHNOLOGY platform, which comprises intuitive hardware, new high-speed servo systems, enhanced ergonomics and optimized programming via the latest MAZATROL SmoothX and SmoothG CNCs.

As Mazak’s Value Inspired Partner many of their new machines tools will feature MERLIN, an award winning IIoT communication platform by MEMEX, along with many other latest ancillary equipment from our VIPs. As well, Rick Mosca, the Chief Operations Officer at MEMEX, will be speaking about “MAKING THE CONNECTION: IIOT > DATA DRIVEN MANUFACTURING > MACHINE MONITORING” on Tuesday, April 19th 2016.

Additionally, have an opportunity to meet with MEMEX representatives to ask any questions you may have, collect take away information and schedule a more in-depth presentation for your company. Also present will be Mazak’s application engineers during the demonstrations to discuss how these machines can solve your production challenges.

Date: 19th-21st April, 2016

Time: 9 AM – 6 PM (CST)

Venue: MIDWEST TECHNOLOGY CENTER

300 East Commerce Drive

Schaumburg, Illinois 60173

 

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No Machine Left Behind – Analyst View of IIoT and MEMEX

No Machine Left Behind

How the Industrial Internet of Things is Revolutionizing Manufacturing.

March 3, 2016 – Sophic Capital – Sean Peasgood & Marcel Valentin

We live in a data-driven society where we’re constantly connected to each other. Now the Internet of Things (IoT) is connecting “things” together. But one industry lags when it comes to connecting “things”. Most industrial plant managers, CEOs and CFOs don’t know what’s happening on their shop floors since their manufacturing machines are “islands of automation” that aren’t connected to each other, or able to report on their productivity in real-time. One public Canadian company has solved this problem. Leading manufacturers are purchasing this company’s “industrial” IoT, or IIoT, solution and seeing significant returns with an average Internal Rate of Return of 300%, which means payback in 4 months or less. Manufacturers aren’t the only ones recognizing this company; Cisco Systems and Mazak Corporation have formed alliances with it to conquer the IIoT opportunity.

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