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Middlesex unveils Cyber Factory

First Cyber Factory training facility in the UK installed at Middlesex University

Posted by Rebecca Paddick | February 06, 2017 | Higher education

The UK’s first Cyber Factory training facility has been installed at Middlesex University London’s new Ritterman Building.

The Cyber Factory is fitted with the latest technology for smart factories and the training equipment has been supplied by Festo, a leading international supplier of automation technology.

Since the year 2000 the University has invested over £200m into its London Campus. The Ritterman Building forms an important part of the ongoing investment in the student experience. 

The new building at Middlesex University houses a number of double-sided pneumatics and electro-pneumatics learning systems, PLCs, Modular Production Systems and a Process Automation System. 

Professor Mehmet Karamanoglu, Design Engineering and Mathematics Head of Department at Middlesex University, said: “Everything we have developed over the years has been specified to industry standard. Expanding our provision in automation, smart technologies is no exception.”

Everything we have developed over the years has been specified to industry standard. Expanding our provision in automation, smart technologies is no exception

The training equipment supplied by Festo comprises a comprehensive six-station table top unit (two production cells of three stations), as well as two bridging stations that enable an Automated Guided Vehicle (AGV) to deliver the logistics / transport between the cells.

Fully automated, the facility also features an energy monitoring system; RFID - a method for tracking components and goods by means of tags which transmit a radio signal; a digital maintenance system; augmented reality; near field communication (NFC) – which enables any object equipped with a chip to exchange information directly without the need for a computer or communications network; and a manufacturing execution system (MES).

This means that the training facility is Industry 4.0 ready. Industry 4.0 is defined as the fourth industrial revolution, in which digitalisation is increasingly used to connect the real with the virtual world, blurring the technological boundaries.

The Ritterman building is Middlesex’s newest building on its London campus, housing subjects from the Faculty of Science and Technology as well as the Faculty of Arts and Creative Industries. It is named in honour of the University’s Chancellor, Dame Janet Ritterman, who has been an outstanding advocate for the University and its students since being appointed Chancellor in 2013.

PICTURED: Professor Mehmet Karamanoglu, Design Engineering and Mathematics Head of Department at Middlesex University (left), with Babak Jahanbani, Head of Learning Systems at Festo Didactic (GB) in the new Middlesex University Cyber Factory.

 

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