Safety is becoming even more important for manufacturing systems.

According to FMAmfg.org:

“An emerging concept in safety is called embedded safety. It’s the movement towards safety capabilities being integrated directly into manufacturing systems. Embedded safety is an extension of the Industry 4.0 concept that capitalizes on data and wireless communications to optimize production. By tracking changes, movements, and more, alerts can be proactively sent or communicated throughout a facility, and processes and systems can be adjusted to prevent injury or damage.  

Here are nine examples of embedded safety:

  • “Fall detection sensors can send alerts or warnings about impending collisions from heavy equipment.  
  • “Data can be recorded in a central database and interface that managers can use to track overall safety trends and potential environmental hazards or human error. 
  • “Augmented reality safety glasses can provide real-time feedback that helps employees adhere to safe practices. For example, they can access visual references of complicated procedures, look at checklists, or call for support.  
  • “Voice-recording components allow workers to document the processes they go through and keep their hands free. 
  • “Location-based analytics provide data that verifies employees are staying out of harm’s way. Or, if a facility is evacuated, it can quickly be determined how many people reached meeting points. 
  • “Integrated safety check systems can cue up specific in-line reminders, procedures, or content based on an assessment of the safety characteristics of each task or job.  
  • “Smart lighting can be used to identify a building’s safe zones and / or warn of potential dangers nearby or around corners in an unmistakable way.  
  • “Remote, rapid response systems speed up how workers share information, making it possible to respond to equipment or procedure issues, track, triage, and resolve an incident before it causes harm. 
  • “Unmanned automated vehicles (UAVs) are being developed with spatial awareness of objects and obstacles within their paths. If it gets closer than the desired protective separation distance from a human or something perceived as such, it stops…”

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