Navigating new manufacturing technologies and understanding their integration implications requires guidance from automation experts and peers who have been there. More than 13,500 global attendees at the 2015 Automation Fair event from Rockwell Automation today took advantage of that expertise, learning about the latest advances in manufacturing and industrial automation enabled by the convergence of information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT).
The event, hosted by Rockwell Automation and the members of its PartnerNetwork program, features the latest products and solutions that are transforming industrial operations into The Connected Enterprise. Along with more than 150 exhibits, the two-day event includes industry forums, technical sessions and hands-on labs designed to expand attendees’ knowledge and use of the latest control, power and information technologies.
“The Connected Enterprise will drive more change in industrial automation in the next 10 years than we’ve seen in the past 50,” said Keith D. Nosbusch, chairman and CEO, Rockwell Automation. “This transformation creates tremendous opportunities for those who take advantage of it, and great risks for those unprepared for a strategic response.”
The 24th annual Automation Fair event offers manufacturers, industrial operators, global media and analysts the opportunity to preview the future of smart manufacturing and industrial automation solutions. This includes new technologies for production environments, such as simulation and modeling, big data and real-time analytics, mobility and the cloud.
Many process automation professionals arrived early in Chicago to join the annual Rockwell Automation Process Solutions User Group (PSUG) meeting on Nov. 16 and 17. They attended more than 30 hands-on labs and technical sessions, and case study presentations from more than 25 customers. Those operations, IT and engineering professionals also provided insights and feedback to help direct development priorities for the PlantPAx modern distributed control system from Rockwell Automation.
On Nov. 17, global media and industry analysts attended the half-day media forum, Automation Perspectives, to hear industry experts discuss the benefits that The Connected Enterprise delivers to automation operations and machine builders. Panelists also shared their experiences in converging IT and OT systems, and addressed key considerations for securing industrial control systems. The event included speakers from 3M, Andersen Corporation, General Mills, Maynilad Water Services Inc., Mullins Food Products and Shell, and alliance partners AT&T, Cisco, Endress + Hauser, FANUC and Microsoft.
The Automation Fair event continues tomorrow, Nov. 19, with forums about advanced automation and information solutions, and how challenges are being met in industries ranging from metals to power and energy. Attendees can also select from dozens of technical sessions and hand-on labs, where they can work with Rockwell Automation products and see advanced applications in action.