Horizontal/Vertical Integration

by Sep 8, 2021Industry 4.0

Integration of information along the value chain from the supplier to consumer.

Systems for integrating the information systems in the supply chains, from the raw material to the finished product. The requirements that are needed to satisfy the Industry 4.0 paradigm require more complex and more demanding production processes :

the production must be organized in a more flexible and faster way so as to achieve mass customisation;

it is necessary to operate considering the rationalisation of resources;

information on production processes and products must be fully available in real-time. In fact, each phase is both managed and influenced by the information that is collected, communicated and accumulated from design to use, up to the after-sales service (manufacturing servicing).

To be able to reach these requirements the Industry 4.0 concept intensively promotes the integration of the systems, both hardware and software and the systems embedded in the production and along the supply chain. The goal is to implement a transformational process that allows the “old” static systems to evolve into cyber-physical production systems that exploit intelligent solutions in a total “smart factory” system.

In vertical integration, there is great potential for optimisation for both logistics and production. If the production procedures in the ERP system and machine control in the plant were divided areas up until now and often distributed between different IT systems; in the integrated industry, IT and control processes are increasingly networked and carried out in an integrated way. In this way, all the company departments will have access to production and logistics data. The effect is a horizontal integration all throughout the company.

It is therefore easier to be able to detect and trace a product and its life cycle with all relevant data (compliance with specifications, the presence of defects and the identification of them and the cause, order fulfilment times). In this new approach to production, the new dynamic and innovative technologies allow both physical and digital production to join, creating a more intelligent production.

They play a decisive role in the idea of an integrated company. These are solutions that are supported by RTLS (Real Time Location System) marketing and monitoring technologies.

They make data acquisition automatic. Some examples of these technologies are:

  • RFID (together with advanced versions of RFID such as NFC, RFID + OTP, RFID + Fides Code, EPC);
  • Beacon;
  • Smart Label;
  • the systems Pick and Put to Light;
  • Voice Picking.

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