One of the main issues that the commissioning engineers and maintenance staff face while working on the shop-floor is the production line equipment testing and certification. Actually robots, transport systems and fixtures require specific connection interfaces in order to get information on their status. In the ComVantage project specific interfaces were developed in order to get easily connected with PLCs (Programmable Logic Controllers), robots, transport systems and acquire and compare data with XLS and CSV files. Several specific applications were developed also on the back end side facilitating the interpretation of the acquired data (see also demo #3). In addition to the interfaces and data harmonization, mobile apps were developed that allow for onsite service technicians as well as remote (and even external) experts to connect and walk through actual issues. The onsite technician connects via a mobile device to the shop-floor, acquires data and shares it with the remote engineering expert for collaborative issue analysis. According to our business simulations, external (e.g. supplier or customer) and internal collaborative capabilities are improved by utilizing the ComVantage framework, which have a positive effect on all six dimensions of business process performance: efficiency, flexibility, quality, innovation, cost, and sustainability. These, in turn, affect all three dimensions of the competitive advantage, i.e. differentiation, cost leadership and financial performance. For example the use of mobile consumer devices (e.g. Android) provides a high availability and reduces hardware related costs.
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