Sunday, October 25, 2020

Sheffield start-up launch software to boost manufacturing capacity

A Sheffield tech start-up has launched software that will help manufacturing businesses improve capacity.

Dubbed the ‘Fitbit for manufacturing’, the new Manufacturing Execution System will help UK manufactures improve shop floor productivity by unlocking Computer Numerical Control (CNC) data and insights that can be turned into actionable information.

The software, which is currently be tested with Yorkshire companies, was launched by FourJaw, grown out of the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC).

FourJaw began as a research project with financial support from the Royal Academy of Engineering and is the brainchild of AMRC Commercialisation Manager Chris Iveson and Machining Project Engineer Robin Hartley.

The team has worked with Sheffield-based techn company The Curve who has increased the product usability by developing an app to present the data.

“Many manufacturing companies are struggling to understand what is happening on their shop floors because performance is difficult to measure in any detail. This is why we have developed our offering as ‘software-as-a service’ which will mean firms adopt accessible data without a huge upfront cost,” said Chris Iveson, founder and CEO of FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics.

Robin Hartley, founder and CTO of FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics, added: “It’s common to find average machine utilisations of around 50% across all machines on a manufacturer’s shop floor, which makes locating a troublesome component on an individual machine a difficult task.

“The system which we have developed is a massive opportunity to augment the technical excellence of UK manufacturers with the world-beating productivity that modern technology enables.”

The AMRC’s Deputy Head of Digital, Jon Bray, said: “This is a beautiful example of what can happen when digital meets manufacturing.

“You can only get this kind of breakthrough when you bring really, really good software guys into close collaboration with really detailed engineering knowledge to interpret what the software is telling you. Sheffield has both these skill sets in spades.”

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