Elements’ workflow tools are designed to provide manufacturers with real-time data-tracking capabilities, which enable them to organize production runs in a way that optimizes their productivity. Through buying the firm, and adding this offering to its own, Authentise believes it could now be possible to bring the “flexibility and responsiveness” of 3D printing to a “broader manufacturing audience.”
“Elements is the perfect addition to the Authentise portfolio,” says Andre Wegner, CEO of Authentise. “Like Authentise, Elements has been laser focused on providing manufacturing operations with the flexibility they need in the post-pandemic world, with the efficiency that data enables in the 21st Century.”
A rapidly-expanding AMES offering
The Authentise Manufacturing Execution System, or ‘AMES,’ is essentially a data-driven workflow optimization software. Introduced to allow manufacturers to create a ‘digital thread’ of their factory operations, the platform is full of features designed to enable the real-time organizing and compliance-monitoring of part production.
However, this hasn’t stopped Authentise from continuing to seek out partnerships that help expand upon AMES’ functionality. Over the last year alone, the firm has worked with Hexagon AB to come up with an end-to-end 3D printing software, and gained EU backing to fund the integration of digital twin visualizations developed by nebumind into AMES, as well as adding Solukon’s Digital Factory Tool.
During that time, Authentise has also merged Riven’s new Warp Adapted Model (WAM) technology into AMES, a platform that allows users to rapidly identify and correct errors early on in the production workflow. Following their integration, it’s said that Riven’s sensors can now gather data before loading it directly into the program’s traceability report, allowing for the full contextual data capture of parts.
Authentise’s Docket integration
Similarly to Authentise’s existing offering, Elements’ Docket platform is built with part traceability in mind. Designed to function as an extension of manufacturers’ existing enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, the firm’s flagship product effectively allows them to remotely manage their factory floors in real-time.
Currently offered via a £35 per month subscription, the platform is packed with live workflow and intelligent planning features, developed to enable users to optimize their scheduling and access critical data on-the-fly. Docket also allows the results of checks to be recorded via tablet or smartphone, and automatically compiles a list of orders on behalf of manufacturers, helping further digitize their workflows.
“Elements provides customers with a unique self-serve tool for all types of manufacturing operations, to quickly create, capture and access repeatable shop floor processes,” explains Wegner. “Delivering intelligent production planning & scheduling, and real time views of production customers can track orders, like they’re paying for coffee.”
Following its acquisition, Elements’ team will now join forces with their counterparts at Authentise, bringing together a mixture of expertise, not just in workflow management, but machine data insight, AI, RFID technologies and more.
Through the deal, Authentise says it has established an open, data-driven platform, with the potential to refocus Industry 4.0 so that it has the “pragmatic flexibility” to solve supply chain challenges. Using the experience of its combined workforce, the firm also anticipates that in future, both teams will be able to achieve their mission, of “delivering end-to-end transparency, reliability and efficiency” via data.
“Supporting workers with data and modern tools gives us more context in manufacturing and allows us to drive better quality, insight and completely new business models,” adds Joe Handsaker, CEO of Elements Technology. “If nothing else, the pandemic has shown that a radical rethink of the way things are made and delivered is necessary. We’re delighted to have found a partner that understands that.”
“The last 20 years have been wasted focusing on predictive maintenance and analytics, which have yielded very little ROI. It’s time to refocus on what’s core to manufacturing: the worker.”
Rise of the workflow monitoring software
Using quality control systems, particularly those based around AI, it’s now increasingly becoming possible for serial 3D printing firms to monitor the compliance of parts in real-time, and make corrections to builds where needed.
Just last month, Sigma Labs partnered with Materialise to develop a technology that allows for the correction of metal 3D printing errors during the production process. The technology has been hailed as a breakthrough by the firms, who say that it could enable adopters to improve the consistency and scalability of their additive manufacturing setups.
Similarly, researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have previously developed an AI-based real-time tracking software called ‘Peregrine.’ Designed as a low-cost alternative to lab characterization equipment, the platform forms a key part of the ORNL’s ‘digital thread,’ which allows it to track and analyze parts in order to stay on top of defects.
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Featured image shows Elements Technology’s platform having been integrated into AMES. Image via Authentise.