Globenewswire | April 28, 2023
Utilidata, an industry leading grid-edge technology company, announced today a manufacturing partnership with Michigan-based Brooks Utility Products, a manufacturer of electric metering related products for over 150 years, to establish domestic manufacturing for its NVIDIA-powered smart grid chips in the heartland of the United States. Utilidata is also opening its innovation lab where research and development for its smart grid chips will take place.
The partnership with Michigan-based Brooks Utility Products, will bring the product to full commercialization in 2023 with assembly, testing, and use of their meter socket adapter. Commercial-scale production will begin this spring to meet utility customer demand. Current utility customers utilizing Utilidata’s smart grid chips include Portland General Electric and Lake Placid Municipal Power.
“Brooks is excited to work with Utilidata to bring new technology and innovation to the electric utility market,” said Robert Kiessling, Brooks Utility Products national marketing manager. “The grid needs technologies like the smart grid chip to become cleaner, more resilient, and decentralized. Coupling Utilidata’s innovative platform and smart chip technology with Brooks’ focus on safe and reliable products provides the optimal solution for a dynamically changing electrical grid.”
Utilidata’s innovation lab is located in the Northern Brewery building in Ann Arbor, and serves as the company’s center of excellence for rapid prototyping and design. The facility is intended to build upon the company’s work with Ann Arbor-based Endectra, a University of Michigan spinout that prototyped the first several generations of the smart grid chip product. Utilidata will harness the talent from the University of Michigan and other local institutions as it begins to recruit for several immediate high-tech engineering jobs at its lab in Ann Arbor.
“One of the biggest challenges electric utilities face is managing the rapid adoption of electric transportation, so there is no better place to be innovating than in Michigan at the intersection of the electric transportation, manufacturing, and clean energy industries,” said Josh Brumberger, Utilidata CEO. “The State of Michigan’s recent investments in technology innovation and workforce development combined with the research and talent of the University of Michigan and other local institutions made Ann Arbor a clear choice.”
Utilidata’s smart grid chip is a distributed artificial intelligence (AI) platform that enhances resiliency of the electric grid, integrates distributed energy resources (DERs) — including solar, storage, and electric vehicles (EVs) — and accelerates the transition to a decarbonized grid. The platform, which is powered by NVIDIA’s accelerated computing and AI technology, collects and analyzes large amounts of granular data at the edge of the grid to provide utility distribution companies with enhanced visibility to seamlessly integrate more clean energy while also reducing power outages and enabling quicker storm recovery.
About Brooks Utility Products
Brooks Utility Products innovates, manufactures and supplies complete lines of metering related products for the utility industry. Brooks Utility Products, is the consolidated brand of E.J. Brooks Company, Meter Devices Co., and Ekstrom Industries. The company traces its beginnings to the founding of E.J. Brooks Company in 1873 as a lead toy manufacturer that quickly evolved into a lead wire seal manufacturer serving to secure the growing railcar and electric meter security markets. In addition to its 140 year history in meter seals and revenue protection Brooks has nearly 100 years of experience in producing test switches, enclosures, adapters, and utility test equipment through its Meter Devices and Ekstrom Industries brands.
Utilidata is a technology company bringing distributed artificial intelligence (AI) to the edge of the electric grid to accelerate decarbonization and better serve utility customers. The company’s smart grid chip, powered by NVIDIA, is the utility industry’s first scalable distributed AI solution, and provides an open, scalable and future-proof platform for grid operations. For more information, visit utilidata.com.
MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY, ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION
SVT Robotics | March 17, 2023
SVT Robotics, a leading enterprise software provider for the rapid integration of industrial robotics, and Kardex Solutions, a leading Global Business Partner of AutoStore™ and intralogistics solution provider of automated storage, retrieval, and material handling systems, today announced a strategic partnership. The partnership now enables Kardex Solutions customers to easily deploy and integrate AutoStore systems with additional automation technology by leveraging the power of the SVT Robotics SOFTBOT® Platform.
Building upon its Kardex Control Center WES technology, Kardex Solutions has connected its software to the SOFTBOT Platform to enable a complete end-to-end pick and pack solution. Through this partnership, Kardex Solutions customers can quickly integrate and deploy an AutoStore system and Kardex Control Center with other warehouse functions, such as a WMS.
"Agility is one of the greatest advantages that companies can leverage. When it comes to automation, it's imperative that businesses can quickly deploy supply chain technologies as well as reconfigure them to meet their evolving needs," said A.K. Schultz, CEO of SVT Robotics. "We're excited to partner with Kardex Solutions to offer their customers a simple and effective method for rapid automation adoption."
"By coupling Kardex Control Center with the SOFTBOT Platform, we're able to provide our customers with a true 'easy button' approach to automation," said Mitch Hayes, President of Kardex Solutions. "What we've done is eliminate the complexities around warehouse automation by creating a pathway for AutoStore systems to easily integrate with technologies commonly found in distribution centers. We're proud to offer this complete solution to our customers."
About SVT Robotics
SVT Robotics is an enterprise software company that's revolutionizing robot deployments in the warehousing and manufacturing industries. SVT's tech-agnostic, low-code SOFTBOT Platform enables companies to integrate robots, automation, IoT technology, or human productivity tools for any task in just days or weeks.
About Kardex Solutions
Kardex Solutions is part of the Kardex Group, which is a leading intralogistics solution provider of automated storage, retrieval, and material handling systems and an AutoStore Global Business Partner. The Kardex mission is to provide solutions and services to increase the efficiency in storing and handling of goods and materials on a global scale.
Prweb | May 16, 2023
Omnicon, a global industry-leading system integrator of industrial automation, smart manufacturing, consulting, and data management solutions, today announced that the company is providing a team of engineering experts to work alongside Barry Callebaut, the world's leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products. Since July 2022, Omnicon has been implementing MES solutions across Barry Callebaut's plants worldwide, utilizing information from newly-imported PLC data to create reports and dashboards. The team is utilizing AVEVA MES Suite, as well as PLCs from Rockwell Automation and Siemens.
“Omnicon has the resources and skills that are compatible with what we need around all aspects of MES implementation, going from modifications on the PLC to the MES design, development and integration. When we need additional resources, they are usually able to meet those needs quickly,” says Bram Van Genabet, a Corporate Digital Innovation Manager at Barry Callebaut. “They have an edge over their competition in terms of agility. As a result of our digital transformation initiatives, we are identifying potential capacity and throughput increases in production processes.”
Omnicon’s work has impacted eight to ten plants directly, and enabled Barry Callebaut to establish KPIs and measure chocolate production with dashboards and reports. This allows the company to identify and address any issues in the production process, resulting in more efficient operations. Omnicon’s primary objective is to optimize machine efficiency, measure material movement, and maximize process efficiency across their organization. Recently, Barry Callebaut received a prestigious award for Smart Manufacturing: the 2023 Factory of the Future award in January 2023. Omnicon takes pride in their completed projects in MES solutions, automation, and digitalization, and is pleased to see Barry Callebaut achieve this milestone.
“At Omnicon, we are proud to continue providing our expertise and resources to assist Barry Callebaut in their MES implementation and digital transformation initiatives. It is rewarding to see our work making a tangible impact on their operations, with increased efficiency and stability in production processes,” says Daniel Gomez, Chief Operating Officer at Omnicon. “Our ability to quickly address and resolve technical challenges and communicate effectively with teams across the globe has been a significant factor in our success.”
The MES project management faced communication challenges due to the complexity of the international organization, which includes teams in Europe, Asia, North America, South America, and Latin America. However, Omnicon’s ability to speak both Spanish and English has been a huge advantage, as well as their ability to quickly address and resolve technical challenges to deliver quality work.
“Barry Callebaut is a worldwide example of best practices and good understanding of the main KPIs of the business. They know that processes are always susceptible to improvement, and they understand that to generate greater positive impacts on production and return on investments, the key factor is timely information that leads to timely and accurate decisions.” says Rafael De Vega, Account Manager at Omnicon. “It has been great to work hand in hand with a company that is so passionate about constant improvement and that keeps its eyes on the future.”
Founded over 30 years ago, Omnicon has quickly expanded from humble beginnings into an impressive, industry-leading system integrator with a large presence in the United States, Latam, and 65 countries worldwide. Omnicon specializes in engineering, process control manufacturing operations management, IIoT, data analytics, and successfully solving automation and production challenges that renowned manufacturing facilities face in industries such as food and beverage, consumer packaged goods, chemical, pharmaceutical, mining & cement, oil & gas, and utilities industries.
In addition to being a Rockwell Automation Gold Integrator and an Aveva System Integrator, Omnicon is proudly a CSIA Certified system integrator and member of the Automation Alliance Group.