CC-BY ref Sandia Labs @ Flickr

Current Status and Challenges

The Dell Technologies Cork Campus is a strategic global hub for Advanced Manufacturing, Engineering, R&D, Services, IT, Sales, Finance & Solutions development. Global and regional leaders and their teams are located at the Cork Campus sites and support a broad range of our operations. The manufacturing floor is 350,000 square foot with lab space 40,000 square foot. There are dual 20kV lines feeding the site; duty/standby arrangement for site power supply with 100% renewable energy being delivered to site. The manufacturing facility is the largest manufacturing site outside of the US and has emerged as a leader in the initiative to develop and manufacture energy efficient information infrastructure technologies. The product portfolio comprises of storage arrays such as PowerMax, PowerFlex, and Isilon.

Within the facility, many cobots (collaborative robots) and Tugbots (Autonomous Mobile Robots) function. These robots generate both data relating to the tasks they carry out, e.g., capturing and analyzing label imagery on both components and outgoing packages, and also data about the robots themselves. Currently, assigned to each cobot is a standalone desktop computer running machine learning software to analyze the generated data and data relating to the robots themselves is currently not analyzed. Diagnosing faults with the cobots is hampered by the lack of analysis of the generated data and the power consumed through using numerous PCs is growing with each new cobot.

The Pilot 

Dell’s use case will be based in the Cork manufacturing facility. The pilot will involve the modification of the current software which analyzes the data gathered by all the cobots in the facility such that it can run within the GLACIATION platform. Following this, the GLACIATION platform will start to ingest all data from the cobots including diagnostic data of the robots themselves alongside the functional data the cobots are designed for.

Expected Outcomes and KPI

There are three primary outcomes for validating the GLACIATION platform through the Dell use case: (1) energy reduction of manufacturing through transition of data analytics to edge-core-cloud platform combined with AI/ML technologies; (2) improved predictive analytics through ingestion of data with metadata annotations into distributed graph of GLACIATION; and (3) reduced power consumption of analytics and prediction through optimized data movement throughout the manufacturing GLACIATION platform.

Baseline Assets

Dell has a manufacturing facility in Cork, Ireland which will participate in this project. Contained within the facility are a number of cobots and tugbots. The Cork manufacturing facility expects to scale up the number of robots within the facility during the lifetime of this project. Alongside the manufacturing assets, Dell also has significant on-premises compute facilities as well as access to cloud resources. Furthermore, Dell also have developed technologies as part of previous funded projects, such as semantic web libraries and tools, which are also available for use as part of this project.

Leading Beneficiary
EMC Information Systems International