What is Panasonic’s Circuit Formation Processes Business?
The Circuit Formation Processes Business started with the release of an insertion machine named “Panasert” in 1968. Until then, component leads had been manually inserted in the manufacturing of home appliances at former Matsushita Electric Industrial. The insertion machine was developed as a solution to automate the process. We have always taken circuit board manufacturing seriously and have worked tirelessly to solve customer’s problems.
The current advances in digital innovation and information technology innovation require us to deliver higher-precision and higher-quality products to the market at lower cost and more quickly. We will provide new value to customers by automating parameter setting and recipe management, which traditionally required fine tuning relying on the expertise of specialists. Furthermore, we will implement “fine process control” to manage high precision processing by integrating various information related to production, such as changes of operators and materials, to improve productivity.
Our Vision: Autonomous Factory
The production sites are required to respond to complex manufacturing processes, such as high-mix/small-lot production, shorter product cycles, and stricter traceability management.
We have focused on the 5Ms (huMan, Machine, Material, Method, and Measurement), the changing factors at production sites.
Panasonic propose the “Autonomous Factory” that evolves autonomously by connecting all 5M data from manufacturing plan to material preparation, manufacturing execution, and maintenance management, from on-site edge devices to processes, floor execution management and administration, and business management at production sites, to respond to any situation by connecting all 5M data and to realize manufacturing according to plan.
Do you have any problems?
- Production planners develop production plans by taking into consideration worker’s skill and staffing (huMan), equipment conditions (Machine), and supply issues (Material) at the production site
- The operation completion level and time vary depending on the persons
- The quantity of components cannot be accurately ascertained due to irregular trial placements and pickup errors
- Cannot increase productivity due to unexpected equipment shutdowns or defects
Our products that realize “Autonomous Factory” solve customer’s problems through AI-based autonomous control of 5M production process variables at the production site by constantly monitoring the 5M status. Thereby customer’s can realize accurate production planning and planned manufacturing.
Panasonic will realize accurate production planning and planned manufacturing that leverage 5M information without relying on the expertise of specialists by converting the judgment based on the experience of humans with knowledge and skills into Intelligent System, and automating manual tasks that are frequently performed at the production site.
To achieve these, in February 2022, we released “APC-5M” software, which detects changes in the 5Ms and stabilize production. After “APC-5M” release, we released “NPM-GP/L Screen Printer” in October 2022, which can implement model changeover automatically. And the “NPM-GH” Modular Mounter in March 2023, which boasts industry-leading productivity and mounting accuracy. We will also release the “Auto Setting Feeder”, an automated component supply system.
NPM G series world-class cutting-edge facilities
Modular Mounter NPM-GH, which boasts a combination of industry-leading productivity and mounting accuracy
[Automation] Automation of changeover and component supply
Auto Setting Feeder* for automatic supply
- The cover tape can be automatically peeled off, the component supply tape in widths ranging from 4 to 104 mm
- The auto loading unit supplies the next tape reel automatically
- Can be used with existing machines by a dedicated cart
* To be released in 2023
Printing process automation function*
- The fully automated changeover enables high-mix production for a long time
- Real-time monitoring of variable factors enables continuous production within tolerance levels
* An optional function with Screen Printer NPM-GP/L
[Intelligent System] Monitor changes in 5Ms to stabilize production
APC-5M is a production execution AI that monitors irregularities in the 5Ms in real time and detects production line changes. It analyzes the accumulated data, identifies the cause, and uses empirical data to autonomously solve the problem. This adds further empirical data, and so the more the system is used the more it grows into a highly precise system in customers’ factories. Further, during its real-time monitoring of the 5Ms, the system can focus on unit condition and determine which units need to be corrected and when. It can then perform maintenance at the right time with minimal impact on operations, and work with the host system to provide predictive maintenance for replacement instructions.
APC-5M system for 5M process control to ensure quality production and stable operation
Automatic recovery function
- Monitoring irregularities in the 5Ms in real time and detecting production line changes
- Making an analysis using empirical data to identify the cause and autonomously solve the problem
- The more it is used, the more it grows in customers’ factories
- Determining which units need to be maitained by monitoring the 5Ms in real time
- Performing maintenance at the right time with minimal impact on operations
The APC-5M and Auto Setting Feeder are also compatible with some existing equipment. The number of compatible models will be expanded.