Bosch is increasing the ambit of artificial intelligence in manufacturing. The company’s special-purpose machinery unit has designed Machine Vision AI, Bosch Rexroth APAS inspector, an application platform for machine-based visual inspection of workpieces. It helps detect hard-to-identify features such as scratches and chipping on surfaces and defects in weld seams.
The Bosch Rexroth APAS inspector, a production assistant for automatic visual inspection, is already established in factories and available on the market. The system can be ‘retrained’ at any time without requiring extensive programming knowledge on the part of the operators.
AI also helps make manufacturing more resource friendly. More than 100 Bosch plants and locations utilise the Energy Platform from the company’s Industry 4.0 portfolio. Also available to external customers, the platform uses intelligent algorithms to quickly detect machines’ energy consumption and cushion any peak loads. This further reduces carbon dioxide emissions in factories; for example, Bosch’s lead plant for Industry 4.0 in Homburg, Germany, cut its emissions by some ten percent within two years.
Bosch is now adding, what it calls a, Balancing Energy Network to its Energy Platform. This software solution uses AI to control and optimise energy flows in manufacturing operations. In addition to boosting energy efficiency, it allows power from renewable energy sources to be put to the best use, enabling flexible operating schedules to be drawn up. The software also has the potential to help all types of larger building complexes reduce environmental footprint, including hospitals, shopping malls, and sports arenas.
In this endeavor, the company sees Industry 4.0 as the way forward. Its portfolio ranges from software packages for manufacturing and logistics, to robots that make and deliver parts, to workplace assistance systems. The company expects that the use of artificial intelligence will take its endeavors to the next level. It can help reduce reject rates in factories, for example, and improve the utilization of machines and systems.