SMT (Surface Mount Technology), or surface mount technology, is one of the most popular technologies and processes in the electronics assembly industry. In the Pearl River Delta represented by Shenzhen, the electronics and information industry is developed and the industry chain is complete. It is a veritable factory in the world.
As the market environment changes and technology changes, in order to meet the increasingly personalized needs of end customers, manufacturers are constantly improving their products, constantly innovating according to market needs, and developing trendy styles and functions to adapt to the current market demand. In order to be able to quickly respond to market diversified and uncertain needs and quickly provide products that meet customer needs, “short, flat, and fast” has become an important feature of production sites during this period, on time, quality, quantity and at a minimum cost Manufacturing products that meet customer needs has become the goal of production management, but progress is seemingly more and more difficult due to resource constraints such as limited skilled personnel and tight equipment. In this case, SMT production is now in a state of small batches and multiple varieties. Because of the inherent production characteristics of the SMT production line, it uses the best production efficiency in large batches. Therefore, for small batches and multiple varieties, there are multiple line changes to complete the production conversion of the product. The SMT line is in an intermittent production state. The increase has caused problems in the production efficiency of the SMT line.
Benefits of small batches and multiple varieties
1.Improve adaptability to changes in demand
Small batch, single piece delivery
Reduce job preparation time
In-process quality assurance system
Generalization of equipment and tooling
- Make manufacturing issues and their weaknesses visible
Eliminate waste caused by improper production management and reduce production management costs
Material waiting due to improper production management
Unnecessary model changes due to improper production management
Increase in indirect operations due to improper production management
4.Improve the adaptability of manufacturing to short delivery time
Eliminate stagnation (things / information)
Reduce the number of intermediate work in process
Characteristics of small batches and multiple varieties
Because many enterprises’ products are configured for customers, different products have different needs, and the resources of enterprises are among multiple varieties.
Every task in the production process requires resources, but the resources that can be used in the actual process are very limited. For example, the problem of equipment conflicts often encountered in the production process is caused by the sharing of project resources. Therefore, limited resources must be properly allocated to meet project needs.
- Uncertainty of order result and production cycle
Due to the instability of customer needs, the clearly defined nodes are inconsistent with the complete cycle of human, machine, material, method, ring, etc., the production cycle is often uncertain, and projects with insufficient cycles require more resources. , Increasing the difficulty of production control.
Material requirements change, resulting in serious procurement delays
Due to the insertion or change of orders, it is difficult for external processing and procurement to reflect the order delivery time. Supply risks are extremely high due to small quantities and a single source of supply.
Difficulties in small batch and multi-variety production
- Dynamic process path planning and deployment of virtual unit lines: emergency insertion, equipment failure, and bottleneck drift.
- Identification and drift of bottlenecks: before and during production
- Multi-level bottlenecks: bottlenecks on assembly lines, bottlenecks on virtual lines of parts, how to coordinate and couple.
- Buffer size: either backlog or poor interference resistance. Production batch, transfer batch, etc.
- Production scheduling: not only consider bottlenecks, but also the impact of non-bottleneck resources.
Many varieties and small batch production models will also encounter many problems in enterprise practice, such as:
Multi-variety and low-batch production, mixed scheduling is difficult
Unable to deliver on time, too much “fire fighting” overtime
Order requires too much follow-up
Frequent changes in production priorities, the original plan could not be implemented
Increasing inventory but often lacking critical materials
The production cycle is too long, the lead time is infinitely expanded
▎How to implement automatic upgrade has become a trouble for OEM companies
The electronic information industry is still a pillar industry in Shenzhen, with an industrial scale of more than 1.200 billion yuan, accounting for about 1/7 of the national electronic information manufacturing revenue. In Shenzhen, there are a large number of leading electronic information companies such as Huawei, ZTE, and TCL, as well as a large number of small-scale lean manufacturing and processing enterprises that were born in response to the needs of the times.
Due to the production characteristics of traditional foundry companies, “different bills of materials for each order, different production processes, different cleaning standards, different packaging requirements, and different labeling specifications”, unlike large factories that do standard products, they can be automated on a large scale upgrade.
How to use industrial robots, advanced automation management platforms, and information technology to help these enterprises achieve flexible production and agile manufacturing are the topics they care about in common.
Under the pressure, many traditional OEM companies have begun to transform to ODM (Original Design Manufacturer), and gradually pay attention to independent intellectual property rights, start to make innovative products, and start to develop independent brands.
▎ Machine substitution may be a “beautiful trap”, how to realize flexible production is the key
China’s Industry 4.0, like an aircraft carrier, propels China forward. For these small and small batch OEM companies, after experiencing the “prosperity era” brought by the demographic dividend, they are also thinking about how to take the road of independent innovation.
Perhaps many OEM companies rely on the channel advantages accumulated over many years of operation and the natural industrial chain advantages of the Pearl River Delta. But the demographic dividend is no longer, the cost advantage is no longer, and the rise and penetration of the Internet has also led to major changes in production methods, management concepts, production equipment, and even raw materials. These factors have begun to cause some entrepreneurs to worry about the future.
“Without the independent innovation of Chinese companies, we can only be a world factory. Without trial and error and iteration of research and development, we will never have our own core technology.”
How to innovate? Is machine substitution really the general trend?
For these manufacturers, there may be pitfalls in purely pursuing “machine substitution” oriented by automated equipment, mass production, and reduced manufacturing costs. Because for them, the key to “machine substitution” is how to implement software flexibility, agile programming, or automatic programming, just like “quick mode change” in TPS (transaction processing system).