Mercedes Launches New Digital Manufacturing EcoSystem to Optimize Automotive Production
Mercedes-Benz pushes for digital automotive production of its vehicles with the Mercedes Car Operations 360 ecosystem.
As the Factory of the Future and Industry 4.0 becomes more advanced and digitization solutions being adopted by manufacturers around the world, Mercedes has desired to fine-tune its operations to maximize its operations and bring its state-of-the-art automotive technology into the new digital age.
Mercedes is now leading the way in highly digitized automotive production through the development of Mercedes Car Operations 360 (MO360).
MO360 and Digital Automotive Production
MO360 is a digital ecosystem comprised of software applications that are connected through a range of shared interfaces and standardized user interfaces. MO360 incorporates information from main production processes and IT systems of Mercedes’ passenger car plants which number more than 30 worldwide.
All production data is accessible across this ecosystem and available in real-time.
Mercedes Car Operations 360 (MO360) ecosystem in action with Mercedes-Benz employees interacting with an interface. Image courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.
In a recent news release, Jörg Burzer, Member of the Board of Management of Mercedes-Benz AG responsible for Production and Supply Chain Management, said that "with MO360, Mercedes-Benz is setting milestones in digital production. The key enablers of the new digital ecosystem are smart data usage, maximum transparency and streamlined processes. This makes the seamless networking of previously separate processes possible and increase efficiency."
The MO360 is said to provide key performance indicators (KPI)-based production control and provides employees with individual needs-based information and work instructions in real-time. Vehicles can be located within the production line with pinpoint precision, which serves as the basis for the needs-based information management of the paperless factory. When workers come to their station, they are able to access the information they need to complete their next work step.
On smartphone devices or tablets, workers can easily confirm the completion of tasks. IoT tools are integrated into the MO360 ecosystem architecture for each factory’s local network. These tools can monitor and assess whether all work steps have been completed and whether they have been done correctly.
All of these capabilities that the MO360 allows ensures high product quality and increased product line efficiency. The digital ecosystem is being used at the new Factory 56 in Sindelfingen for the first time and is set to open in September 2020.
MO360 Quality Management System
The MO360 has the QUALITY LIVE quality management system fully integrated within its ecosystem. With this capability, quality managers have access to the current live status of every single vehicle on the factory floor at the touch of a button and in real-time. Any deviations in the production line process are identified and rectified immediately to prevent downtime.
The MO360 digital ecosystem. Image courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.
The management system uses AI methods for structured problem solving and continuous process optimization. All knowledge gained which includes optimized quality control loops helps prevent vehicle rework and are available to all plants in the MO360 global network.
Production data within the MO360 ecosystem flows seamlessly into the digital Shopfloor Management (SFMdigital) application. Managers have instant access to both production- and control-related KPIs, enabling them to respond quickly to the requirements of the production line. The SFMdigital ensures that quality processes are applied and acts as a digital communication tool.
Through the MO360 ecosystem, Mercedes expects to increase production efficiency by 15% by 2020.