Plasterboard Manufacturing in the Age of Industry 4.0

  • By David Edwards
  • October 16, 2023
  • Industrial
  • Building & Construction
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Voice of the customer

Domino recently undertook an exercise to truly get under the skin of the challenges manufacturers in the construction industry face. As with many other industries, construction materials such as plasterboard (also known as drywall) need to be coded so that they are identifiable - including manufacturing codes with origin, date and time of production, and batch number. This ensures both the correct product identification, and aids in traceability once the product leaves the factory. In addition, high resolution product and brand details are desired at both a product level and pallet side for clear and high-quality branding.

However, construction environments also have their unique challenges, which add complexity to product coding. Firstly, codes themselves must be durable and resistant to harsh and demanding conditions. Once a product is coded, it’s coded for life, so ensuring the code is both correct and readable is paramount. This can be particularly challenging, as manufacturing lines are long – some have been known to be as long as 1km – and operate at particularly high speeds with little to no room for downtime or error, which can cause unnecessary and costly waste.

Achieving maximum uptime is key to competitiveness. Therefore, not only must the coding machine be durable, but there is a clear opportunity to use Industry 4.0 automation tools that reduce reliance on manual operators, and provide 24/7 remote monitoring of the whole production line to optimise efficiency and overall equipment effectiveness (OEE).

Industry 4.0 automation – connectivity without compromise

Domino’s Cx350i offers an end-to-end solution for Industry 4.0-based coding and marking on plasterboard production lines. This highly robust, industrial printer meets the demands of commercial and production managers working in industrial applications, and also comes with multiple options for connectivity for additional flexibility and automation.

The printer can connect to a range of label creation packages, such as NiceLabelTM and Domino Designer, as well as to your factory MES and ERP systems, via Domino Automation. Domino’s Dynamark command protocol can provide seamless integration into bespoke factory software systems. In addition, Domino’s QuickDesign coding automation software allows product codes to be controlled from a central location, streamlining product changeovers and minimising errors.

The Cx350i can be installed alongside Domino’s code inspection solution, R-Series vision control systems. The R-Series automatically validates code presence, placement, and readability without the need for manual checking or intervention. This not only reduces the risk of coding errors, but also frees up operator time for other activities.

 

The Cx350i is also compatible with Domino Cloud, to provide 24/7 remote monitoring of printer performance. Online dashboards provide real-time operational insight for maximum production efficiency, and automatic alerts can be sent to notify when intervention is required, or if faults are detected.

Support without compromise

Domino’s offering for construction manufacturers also extends beyond the factory setting, with worldwide helpdesk and field service support, and additional fault monitoring via Domino Cloud to ensure the earliest possible intervention to minimise downtime and maximise OEE.

Moreover, Domino’s SafeGuard service and support packages provide access to high-quality, on-site assistance, and augmented reality (AR)-enabled remote guidance from technical experts, helping to rectify simple issues as they occur. This ensures manufacturers are not left waiting days for a field engineer to arrive to fix a problem.

 

With the latest industrial printer designed for large-area, high-resolution, and high-speed production environments, the Cx350i, combined with Domino’s range of automation, connectivity, and support solutions, manufacturers can now fully embrace plasterboard coding without compromise.

For more information, please get in touch with one of our Domino experts today.

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