From the Innovation Tunnel to the Factory without Limits
A 2000 square metre space for demonstrations and interactive and experiential activities, showing visitors a new factory concept that has been built on a more a human scale
Factories are looking for young people but young people feel like they don’t belong in factories. This is what emerges from the latest publications of the MECSPE National Observatory for SMEs.
Factories have become intelligent; they no longer have just hardware but so much software as well. Yet they are still unattractive for young people.
This lack of attractiveness has resulted in the scarce availability of specialized professionals for manufacturing companies, who are always looking for qualified personnel.
Why don’t factories attract young people?
Analyses that have been carried out show that the main causes of the lack of attractiveness of factory work lie in some clichés about the type of work as being “repetitive“, “tiring and manual”, and “binding” in terms of space and time, and therefore very far from the current lifestyle that is more oriented towards flexible working hours. There is also the feeling that factories are “technologically backward”.
The reputation of the factory environment must therefore change, because the reality is actually very distant from what the collective imagination perceives.
Factories have been through innovation and change, supported by the 4.0 Industry Plan. They have been updated and they collect data and information. These bits of data haven’t taken on the value of information.
These more and more automated factories require more “intelligence” instead of “workforce”, making work and the workplace potentially limitless. The “degrees of freedom” in the Factory 4.0 system are infinite.
“Freedom” seems to be the unifying paradigm that encompasses most of the expectations and dreams of young people. If we have our freedom we also have motivation, choices, criticisms, actions, creativity, and lifestyles.
To try to solve this paradox of young people and factories being very distant one from the other, we want to show the technologies that are ‘possible’ and ‘applied’ in today’s factories. These stories of modern factories will fascinate young people, who through their modern interpretation can become an essential element of process innovation for the factory itself.
Iot, Big Data, Cloud Manufacturing, Digital Twin, Augmented and Virtual Reality, Gamification, Smart Working and Wearable Devices, Distributed Production with Additive Manufacturing, New Spaces, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence; technological tools for design, management and predictive maintenance of plants for every modern factory, without losing the connection with production lines made of machines.
With these tools young people can find factories more appropriate and more “responsive” to their “belief system” and their lifestyles, and factories will have new sets of eyes and points of view for their activities.
All of this has generated the concept of Factories without Limits: functional, physical, psychological, technical and operational.
This scenario can be seen at MECSPE inside the exhibition area in Pavilion 4.