No matter how schooled you are in the world of automation, there is always plenty to learn—and the rate of required learning has been accelerating. This reality is taking hold for engineers, operators, and plant management across industries.
Why? Here are three significant reasons:
- With the explosion of the Internet of Things, Industry 4.0, and numerous smart, connected technologies over the past few years, it’s been nearly impossible to keep up with how all these advances are impacting every aspect of automation—from sensors and software to motors and drives.
- As businesses in every industrial vertical seek to do more with less, this means that fewer people are inevitably tasked with doing more. This requires everyone in industry to stay up to date on the latest developments impacting technologies that may not necessarily be within their realm of responsibility today.
- Whether you work in discrete manufacturing, the processing industries or in critical infrastructure, the connective thread between all of these vertical industries is automation. And the ever-expanding capabilities of these technologies through embedded computing and software advances means that more and more of these technologies are finding a home in every industry. The applications in each vertical are, of course, dramatically different, but the technologies enabling them are increasingly similar if not exactly the same.
These reasons—and certainly many more—are creating a near continuous need for technology insights and answers.
To help deliver these needed insights, Automation World reached out to its readers asking them to send in their most pressing questions about automation technologies. We received loads of responses. Here’s a sampling of just a few:
- Explain the different industrial network topology types and how to choose the right one.
- What are the key considerations when choosing IoT sensors for industrial applications?
- Do servo motor/drive combinations really work better if purchased from same vendor?
- Can MES replace SCADA?
- How do you integrate edge computing with existing systems?
Since receiving these questions, we’ve been connecting with industry experts to get the answers and we’ll be featuring them in our new podcast series “Automation World Gets Your Questions Answered,” sponsored by Allied Electronics and Automation.
The first installment of this new podcast series is now accessible on the Automation World website; it’s also available on all the major podcast sites like iTunes and Spotify—just search on “Automation World Gets Your Questions Answered” and be sure to subscribe to be notified when new episodes are posted each month.
We’re sure you’ll find this series to be a good source of information to help expand your understanding of automation technologies, so we hope you’ll tune in regularly.
Of course, we’re also fairly certain that the conversations featured in this series will likely raise even more questions. And we’re here for that too, so our door will always be open for more of your questions that we’ll continue to address in the “Automation World Gets Your Questions Answered” podcast series. Feel free to send your questions to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.