FACTORY AUTOMATION IS EXPECTED TO GROW TO $4.43 BN BY 2023
The Machinist|August 2021
In an interview, Parminder Singh, Head of Design & Manufacturing - India & SAARC at Autodesk talks about how companies are adapting and overcoming the challenges posed by technology in a during/post-COVID world and expected growth in industrial automation in India
Rahul Kamat

Tell us about the role of design, technology and engineering in making India self-dependent?

The Make in India initiative and the more recent Atmanirbhar Bharat campaign are aimed at catalyzing India’s manufacturing sector and creating strong local supply chains. The government’s aim of setting the manufacturing sector on course to create 100 million new jobs by 2022 and contribute $1 trillion to the national economy by 2025 will necessitate long-term strategic thinking and the adoption of more technology.

While the pandemic has reinforced the need for Indian manufacturing to adopt digital capabilities, ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ — a major element in igniting India’s manufacturing sector — will harness the power of connected data and artificial intelligence (AI) to help companies automate their engineering and manufacturing processes, driving push-button automation. Consequently, India is adapting to digitalisation at a faster rate, as technology will play a key role in tackling post-Covid challenges.

Smart manufacturing helps manufacturers become more efficient, stay ahead of the competition and explore new business models and widespread digitisation of all manufacturing practices. It has the potential to improve outcomes for individual businesses and the manufacturing industry.

For instance, automation technology such as generative design, a technology exclusively available in Autodesk’s Fusion 360, enables weight reduction, strength, affordability, sustainability, and better aesthetics. A form of artificial intelligence that leverages cloud computing to create better outcomes, it allows manufacturers to explore thousands of designs in less time than they could deliver a single concept using traditional processes. Its ability to solve complex problems faster and deliver more potential solutions than a human ever could yields a shorter time to market, reduced costs and a greater range of innovative solutions.

As design and manufacturing converge, Autodesk can equip Indian companies with an integrated set of desktop and cloud-based software tools that consolidate design, engineering, simulation, collaboration, CAM (computer-aided manufacturing), additive manufacturing and factory floor management. For example, Magna Advanced Technologies produces prototypes and tooling for the highly competitive automotive market. PowerMill and PowerShape enable users to design and manufacture complex parts faster while conserving capital expenditure.

The convergence of technology and design is vital for India to emerge as a sustainable manufacturing hub. Autodesk aims to create and nurture a holistic design ecosystem that uses ‘Design First’ as the core approach to manufacturing anything using fewer resources, less time and with a lesser impact on the environment. As a design partner to our customers, we are enabling automation through our solutions in the manufacturing and construction sectors, which aligns with governmental initiatives, including the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Urban (PMAY-U), which envisions Housing for All by 2022 and the Make in India mission.

Do you agree that Industry 4.0 has finally paved the way for smart manufacturing?

The technologies of the fourth industrial revolution (Industry 4.0)—connected robotics, 3D printing, cloud computing, artificial intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things (IoT)—have made smart manufacturing possible and sped innovation to a dizzying clip.

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