Displaying items by tag: Mitsubishi Electric

Ratingen, Germany 19. August 2021 A century of Mitsubishi Electric – a company with a rich history which parallels that of modern-day Japan. Since 1921 Mitsubishi Electric’s success has grown as a global player in the field of automation

The very first Mitsubishi company was established back in 1870 by Yataro Iwasaki. This company provided the foundations for what would later become the group of independent companies which are active in almost every industrial sector. In 1921 the company known today as Mitsubishi Electric Corporation was formed and became renowned the world over for its expertise and innovation in the development of high-quality electrical and electronic products.

Products developed and manufactured by Mitsubishi Electric can be found in all fields of industry, including information processing and communications, space development and satellite communications, home electronics, industrial automation, energy, mobility and building technology, as well as in HVAC systems.

Europe has long been a key market for Mitsubishi Electric, and in 1969 the company as it opened its first representative office in the region which would form the basis for its EMEA operations today.

Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V., German Branch, located in Ratingen near Düsseldorf. [Source: Mitsubishi Electric Europe]Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V., German Branch, located in Ratingen near Düsseldorf. [Source: Mitsubishi Electric Europe]

Factory Automation
Throughout its history, the Factory Automation division of Mitsubishi Electric has been one of the global leaders in automation product development. Combining innovative technologies with advanced functionalities and feature sets, with the highest levels of reliability. As early as 1973, the company developed its first PLC which was designed to replace relay control panels.

Innovations in frequency inverters, servo/motion products and industrial robots followed, and in 2007 the company launched the iQ Platform, the first automation platform to combine four types of controllers on a single platform – robot, motion, CNC and PLC.

Digitalisation pioneer
In 2001, Mitsubishi Electric launched its e-F@ctory concept – a pioneering approach to digitalisation that was years in advance of the definition of Industry 4.0 or the rise of the Internet of Things. It has seen the company develop a reputation with customers as a trusted partner through all stages of their digital transformation.

Strong partnerships have also driven the company to continuously evolve its e-F@ctory Alliance, an integral part of e-F@ctory concept. This has enabled Mitsubishi Electric and its partners to offer their joint customers a wider range of optimised solutions that help them to enhance their competitive advantage and further drive their digital business transformation.

With the development of Maisart (“Mitsubishi Electric's AI creates the State-of-the-ART in technology”), the stage has been set for the company to continue to be a driver of innovation for the next 100 years.

Further information at: 

About Mitsubishi Electric Corporation
With 100 years of experience in providing reliable, high-quality products, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (TOKYO: 6503) is a recognized world leader in the manufacture, marketing and sales of electrical and electronic equipment used in information processing and communications, space development and satellite communications, consumer electronics, industrial technology, energy, transportation and building equipment. Mitsubishi Electric enriches society with technology in the spirit of its “Changes for the Better.” The company recorded a revenue of 4.194,4 billion yen (U.S.$ 37,8 billion*) in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2021.  For more information please visit http://www.MitsubishiElectric.com.

*U.S. dollar amounts are translated from yen at the rate of ¥111=U.S.$1, the approximate rate on the Tokyo Foreign Exchange Market on March 31, 2021

About Mitsubishi Electric Factory Automation Business Group
Offering a vast range of automation and processing technologies, including controllers, drive products, power distribution and control products, electrical discharge machines, laser processing machines, computerized numerical controllers, and industrial robots, Mitsubishi Electric helps bring higher productivity – and quality – to the factory floor. In addition, our extensive service networks around the globe provide direct communication and comprehensive support to customers.

About Factory Automation EMEA
Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V., Factory Automation EMEA has its European headquarters in Ratingen near Dusseldorf, Germany. It is a part of Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V. that has been represented in Germany since 1978, a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Japan.
The role of Factory Automation EMEA is to manage sales, service and support across its network of local branches and distributors throughout the EMEA region.

About e-F@ctory>
e-F@ctory is Mitsubishi Electric’s integrated concept to build reliable and flexible manufacturing systems that enable users to achieve many of their high speed, information driven manufacturing aspirations. Through its partner solution activity, the e-F@ctory Alliance, and its work with open network associations such as The CC-Link Partners Association (CLPA), users can build comprehensive solutions based on a wide ranging “best in class” principle.
In summary, e-F@ctory and the e-F@ctory Alliance enable customers to achieve integrated manufacturing but still retain the ability to choose the most optimal suppliers and solutions.

*e-F@ctory, iQ Platform are trademarks of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation in Japan and other countries.
*Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others.
*All other trademarks are acknowledged

Further Information:
www.eu3a.mitsubishielectric.com/fa/

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Thursday, 27 May 2021 09:38

Securing OT systems against cyber-attack

With Smart Manufacturing continuing to merge the worlds of information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT), the demand for comprehensive security measures to protect OT networks is growing. For a standards-based approach, stakeholders can turn to the IEC 62443 guidelines.

David Bean, Solutions Manager at Mitsubishi Electric, looks at the fundamental aspects that need to be considered, including suitable system level design, risk management, system intrusion detection and automation platform vulnerability management.

As the technologies to bridge the divide between the worlds of IT and OT within a plant have become more established, the digitalisation of businesses has accelerated. The goal of this digital transformation is to provide a foundation to boost productivity, optimise asset availability and maximise plant utilisation. That foundation is built upon a rapidly growing network of increasingly sophisticated plant floor devices – the so-called Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

Mitsubishi Electric delivers solutions to help businesses protect their OT networks. Mitsubishi Electric delivers solutions to help businesses protect their OT networks.

Addressing cyber security

However, this greater level of integration brings with it an increased onus to consider and improve cyber security. Figures from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) and gov.uk (1) estimate the cost to UK businesses of cyber breaches in excess of £18bn. From a general manufacturing perspective cyber-attack brings the risk of lost production, theft of intellectual property and the negative impact on brand confidence as well as potential environmental damage if safety systems are affected. It is perhaps, then, not a surprise to find that, according to a Make UK report (2), the threat of cyber-attacks is stopping some 35% of manufacturers from investing in digitalisation.

Further, from the perspective of safety critical infrastructure, asset owners also have to consider the potential cost of being found to be non-compliant with the Network and Information Systems (NIS) Directive. In the UK, the maximum penalty for a breach of the NIS Directive is £17m, enough to give even the biggest businesses pause to think.

Implementing cyber security standards

With all of that said, though, the risk of not investing in digital transformation is enormous, particularly in this era of global competition. From an OT perspective, there are now established standards that provide all of the stakeholders in a deployed industrial automation system – the asset owners, the system designers/integrators and the individual product vendors – with the tools and guidelines that they need to secure an installation against cyber-attack.

Chief among these is IEC 62443, which provides a systematic and practical approach to cyber security for plant OT systems, covering every aspect from initial risk assessment right through to operations. It defines the differing security roles of the key stakeholders, specifying the unique requirements for each security level within the control ecosystem.

IEC 62443 reinforces the accepted ‘defence in depth’ strategy, defining methodologies for implementing OT cyber security measures and outlining procedures as well as policies that can form the methods, for firstly hindering an attack and secondly recovering from an attack.

It is notable that IEC 62443 places some considerable onus on the automation equipment supplier to embed protective features within their products to contribute to system design considerations and lifecycle management, as well as respond to any vulnerabilities that may be discovered.

Mitsubishi Electric’s products have long offered a number of security features that support the development of a robust cyber security strategy. Mitsubishi Electric’s products have long offered a number of security features that support the development of a robust cyber security strategy.

Defence in depth

This is something Mitsubishi Electric takes very seriously. The company’s products have long offered a number of security features that support the development of a robust cyber security strategy. The ‘defence in depth’ approach that it adopts when advising systems integrators and asset owners on the methodologies that should be used to implement secure networks and control systems are closely aligned with IEC 62443.

In addition, Mitsubishi Electric has established a Product Security Incident Response Team (PSIRT) as defined in IEC 62443. Further, Mitsubishi Electric offers a risk audit service that helps asset owners understand the risks in terms of criticality and consequence of a potential cyber breach. The service provides a written report on the status of the networked industrial control systems and offers recommendations for any remediation that is required to meet the standards set out in IEC 62443.

Most recently, Mitsubishi Electric has built a collaboration with Radiflow, whose intrusion detection and analytical tools for generating risk reports and remediation measures meet all the requirements of IEC 62443. These tools can provide ongoing passive status monitoring of networked assets, highlighting any associated vulnerabilities – for example in access control methods – and flagging up any suspicious network traffic.

Evolving cyber threat

In essence, an OT cyber security solution is an insurance policy and as with so many things in life, the more comprehensive the policy, the greater the level of protection. Implementing a robust solution is part of a successful digital transformation strategy and ensures that companies can boost productivity and enhance their competitiveness.

Mitsubishi Electric strives to help businesses leverage state-of-the-art industrial automation solutions within a secure framework, while also providing a single point of contact to create smart manufacturing solutions with secure OT networks. All of this provides the foundation for a strong security platform for industrial automation systems, in accordance with IEC 62443 and meeting the requirements of the NIS Directive.

References:

(1) https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/674046/understanding-costs-of-cyber-crime-horr96.pdf
(2) https://www.makeuk.org/insights/blogs/manufacturers-agree-they-need-more-cyber-security-support

About Mitsubishi Electric

With 100 years of experience in providing reliable, high-quality products, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (TOKYO: 6503) is a recognized world leader in the manufacture, marketing and sales of electrical and electronic equipment used in information processing and communications, space development and satellite communications, consumer electronics, industrial technology, energy, transportation and building equipment. Embracing the spirit of its corporate statement, Changes for the Better, and its environmental statement, Eco Changes, Mitsubishi Electric endeavors to be a global, leading green company, enriching society with technology. The company recorded consolidated group sales of 37.8 billion dollars* in the fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2021.

Mitsubishi Electric Europe, Industrial Automation – UK Branch is located in Hatfield, United Kingdom. It is a part of the European Factory Automation Business Group based in Ratingen, Germany which in turn is part of Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V., a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Japan.

The role of Industrial Automation – UK Branch is to manage sales, service and support across its network of local branches and distributors throughout the United Kingdom.

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With increased competition, often on a global scale, manufacturers need to differentiate themselves by tailoring products more closely to customer demand. This, of course, carries with it an implicit reduction in batch sizes and has seen the rise of ‘high-mix, low-volume production. Cobots can enable manufacturers to effectively meet individual customer requirements with greater product variety in smaller batches. Oliver Giertz, Product Manager for Servo/Motion and robotics for the EMEA region at Mitsubishi Electric, Factory Automation, explains how collaborative robots are helping manufacturers to increase flexibility, boost quality, and drive down operational costs.

While high-volume production, with its repetitive tasks, has seen increased adoption of traditional industrial robots, we have to think differently in a high-mix production environment where the programming and reconfiguration effort to change from one product to the next can impact on productivity. In high-mix production, there might be several line changeovers needed in a given shift.

For many manufacturers, this has meant an increased reliance on manual labour. But that, in turn, increases operational costs when compared with high-volume production – and the greater the mix, the higher the emphasis on manual labour, and the greater the production cost for a given volume.

Further, high-mix, low volume (HMLV) production requires more stringent quality control processes to be put in place, with the opportunity for production errors increasing as the batch sizes reduces. At the same time, the levels of changeovers between different products can often become a bottleneck.

However, the new breed of collaborative robots (or cobots) is responding to the trend of HMLV production, delivering the required flexibility and the ability to reconfigure processes quickly as well as easily.

Cobots are proving a key enabler for high-mix automation while offering the maximum return on investment. (Image Source: Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V.)Cobots are proving a key enabler for high-mix automation while offering the maximum return on investment. (Image Source: Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V.)

Improved flexibility, consistency and reliability
Designed to assist human operators on the shop floor, cobots can take on simple, repetitive and physically strenuous tasks. This offers improved consistency and reliability in manufacturing while enabling humans to concentrate on more complex jobs. A cobot is also flexible and can quickly learn to adapt to a variety of tasks, from picking and placing to machine tending.

A key benefit of cobots is their ease of programming, enabling frequent redeployment and fast set-up without advanced robotic programming expertise. One recent development which can improve the ease and speed of configuration is hand-guided teaching, where the cobot arm is simply moved to the desired position and added to the operational sequence at the press of a button. This technology means that no complex programming is required, and it can also be combined with touch-screen graphical interfaces to implement more sophisticated operations.

A digital twin can also be used to enhance the speed of set-up and redeployment. Employing a digital representation of the physical cobot, including the virtual capability to evaluate performance, the digital twin can simulate cobot interaction to ensure that it can safely and predictably fulfil the desired task before deployment.

This ease of programming and redeployment is one of the main enablers of HMLV production and holds the key to reducing operational costs. At the same time, the increased accuracy of the latest cobots is an important contributor to improving quality in a high-mix environment. As an example, Mitsubishi Electric’s MELFA ASSISTA cobots can provide a repeat accuracy of ±0.03mm, making them ideal even for the most delicate and precise tasks.

By moving towards HMLV production, manufacturers are finding that they can differentiate themselves from their competitors, with the ability to tailor products to specific customer requirements, even in the smallest of batches. Further, with the ability to quickly switch production to a different product, manufacturers can become more responsive to changes in the market, delivering an additional competitive advantage.

Cobots are proving a key enabler for high-mix automation while offering the maximum return on investment. In an HMLV production environment, cobots drive up flexibility and reduce operational costs.

About Mitsubishi Electric
With 100 years of experience in providing reliable, high-quality products, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation is a recognized world leader in the manufacture, marketing and sales of electrical and electronic equipment used in information processing and communications, space development and satellite communications, consumer electronics, industrial technology, energy, mobility and building technology, as well as heating, cooling and air-conditioning technology.

Embracing the spirit of its “Changes for the Better”, Mitsubishi Electric endeavours to be a global, leading green company, enriching society with technology.

With around 146,500 employees the company recorded consolidated group sales of 40.9 billion US Dollar* in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020.

Our sales offices, research & development centres and manufacturing plants are located in over 30 countries.

Factory Automation EMEA
Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V., Factory Automation EMEA has its European headquarters in Ratingen near Dusseldorf, Germany. It is a part of Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V. that has been represented in Germany since 1978, a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Japan.

The role of Factory Automation EMEA is to manage sales, service and support across its network of local branches and distributors throughout the EMEA region.

* At an exchange rate of 109 yen to the US dollar, the rate given by the Tokyo Foreign Exchange Market on March 31, 2020

Further Information:
www.eu3a.mitsubishielectric.com/fa/

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Mitsubishi Electric Corporation and long-term e-F@ctory solution partner Eplan are strengthening their digital solution's collaboration further as Mitsubishi Electric joins Eplan's new partner network; an initiative to further facilitate the structured implementation of digital manufacturing.

The Eplan Partner Network (EPN) is a framework for participants to jointly develop and market interfaces between Eplan's advanced planning software and, amongst others, field level devices and parts such as PLCs and their related simulators. The EPN partnership is based on common, binding goals, for enhancing and supporting such interfaces. This commitment both increases customer benefits and enhances quality.

The integrated automation solution provided by Mitsubishi Electric and Eplan connects Electric P8 to Mitsubishi Electric’s MELSOFT iQ Works, an integrated engineering software for programming and managing factory automation devices. Based on the open data format AutomationML, data such as symbolic addresses, I/O lists and process variables can be exchanged bi-directionally between both software tools. This optimizes the implementation of engineering and automation processes and paves the way  towards  Industry 4.0. The dataset created in Eplan forms the basis for the PLC hardware (rack) assembly and software programming in MELSOFT iQ Works. Users can exchange, later edit, and synchronize project data in any direction at all stages of the project. The data is shared throughout the whole product development process as a single source of truth to ensure its consistency. In addition, the Eplan Data Portal provides additional and necessary component data. Taken together, the integration accelerates component configuration and design planning significantly.

Mitsubishi Electric has joined the Eplan Partner Network as a Technology PartnerMitsubishi Electric has joined the Eplan Partner Network as a Technology Partner

“We are pleased to have Mitsubishi Electric join our network,” says Marco Litto, Senior Vice President Strategy & Corporate Program. “With the EPN, we’re maximizing the overall benefits of our own solutions and those of our partners in the ecosystem of industrial automation for shared customers. Together we’re creating a win-win situation for both customers and partners.”

“Our participation in the EPN will tighten even more the existing relationship between Mitsubishi Electric and Eplan,” said Hajime Sugiyama, Industrial IoT Evangelist and Lead Global e-F@ctory Alliance coordinator of Mitsubishi Electric. “We are looking forward to further collaboration with Eplan to bring customers more benefit in their digital manufacturing initiatives.”

Eplan and Mitsubishi Electric have a long history of working together, which was initially kicked off through the e-F@ctory Alliance where the companies now work together in Japan, Europe and many other regions around the world. The new EPN will consequently strengthen ties between the companies and within the alliance, enabling customers to find the most optimal solutions for their integrated manufacturing needs.

About Mitsubishi Electric Corporation
With 100 years of experience in providing reliable, high-quality products, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (TOKYO: 6503) is a recognized world leader in the manufacture, marketing and sales of electrical and electronic equipment used in information processing and communications, space development and satellite communications, consumer electronics, industrial technology, energy, transportation and building equipment. Mitsubishi Electric enriches society with technology in the spirit of its “Changes for the Better.” The company recorded a revenue of 4,462.5 billion yen (U.S.$ 40.9 billion*) in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020.  For more information please visit http://www.MitsubishiElectric.com.

*U.S. dollar amounts are translated from yen at the rate of 109=U.S.$1, the approximate rate on the Tokyo Foreign Exchange Market on March 31, 2020

About Factory Automation EMEA
Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V., Factory Automation EMEA has its European headquarters in Ratingen near Dusseldorf, Germany. It is a part of Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V. that has been represented in Germany since 1978, a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Japan.
The role of Factory Automation EMEA is to manage sales, service and support across its network of local branches and distributors throughout the EMEA region.

About e-F@ctory>
e-F@ctory is Mitsubishi Electric’s integrated concept to build reliable and flexible manufacturing systems that enable users to achieve many of their high speed, information driven manufacturing aspirations. Through its partner solution activity, the e-F@ctory Alliance, and its work with open network associations such as The CC-Link Partners Association (CLPA), users can build comprehensive solutions based on a wide ranging “best in class” principle.
In summary, e-F@ctory and the e-F@ctory Alliance enable customers to achieve integrated manufacturing but still retain the ability to choose the most optimal suppliers and solutions.

*e-F@ctory, iQ Platform are trademarks of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation in Japan and other countries.
*Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others.
*All other trademarks are acknowledged

Further Information:
www.eu3a.mitsubishielectric.com/fa/

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