Automation and machine safety vendors SICK, Rockwell Automation, and Omron Electronics are developing an open protocol for safety communications. It will be based on common, standard protocol found in DeviceNet and Ethernet/IP and consists of an extension to the existing standard. The new safety protocol will allow standard and safety devices to operate on the same network and permit the latter to communicate across DeviceNet and Ethernet/IP networks to other safety devices with no extra programming.
Cost, product development rigor, the patient-as-a-user movement, and consumer electronics that include wireless connectivity are just a few hot topics swirling around medical devices. Each brings challenges that create innovation opportunities. If we briefly look at each one, we can see that one common need will be innovation in simplicity.
The supply chain will change significantly over the next 10 years as industry 4.0 technology enhances supply chain performance, according to the 2015 MHI Annual Industry Report, “Supply Chain Innovation — Making the impossible possible.”
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