Rockwell Automation and Microsoft are teaming up to revolutionize industrial automation design and development. They are leveraging generative artificial intelligence (AI) to empower workers and expedite time-to-market for customers building industrial automation systems. This collaboration will integrate Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service into FactoryTalk Design Studio, introducing groundbreaking capabilities that will accelerate development and enhance efficiency for industrial automation projects.
According to Matthew Littlefield, president LNS Research, the shortage of skilled labor and subsequent dip in productivity pose the greatest challenge for industrial organizations and service providers today. Automation projects are becoming more complex and valuable, while the ecosystem of service providers is ill-equipped to deliver on time, quality, and budget. This is where generative AI comes in, capturing the imagination and increasing the productivity of workers in various IT and business scenarios.
Rockwell Automation and Microsoft’s strategic partnership is a significant step towards addressing these long-term challenges. They recognize the potential of AI in boosting automation across different roles, including decision makers, control engineers, and operators. By joining forces, they aim to streamline processes, drive worker productivity, and shape the future of technology in industrial automation.
The integration of Azure OpenAI Service into FactoryTalk Design Studio enables engineers to generate code using natural language prompts, automating routine tasks and improving design efficiency. It also facilitates the mentoring of newcomers and allows seasoned engineers to accelerate development. Moreover, it provides access to vast collections of information, helping developers find relevant assistance and further their education.
Rockwell and Microsoft envision extending this integrated technology to solve other challenges, such as Quality Management and Improvement, Failure Mode Analysis, and training frontline workers through chat-based collaboration with experienced human workers and Azure OpenAI Service-based chatbots.
Judson Althoff, executive vice president and chief commercial officer at Microsoft, expresses his enthusiasm for the partnership, highlighting the growing interest in AI and Microsoft’s position as a trusted cloud and AI provider. He emphasizes their commitment to helping industrial professionals create complex control systems, optimize operations, and drive innovation in industrial organizations.
Additionally, Rockwell and Microsoft are exploring ways to advance innovation in the industrial metaverse. Leveraging their respective IoT capabilities, cloud datasets, simulations, and AI, they aim to design and build products more effectively, efficiently, and sustainably.
To showcase their collaborative work, Rockwell will feature the results of their partnership with Microsoft during the 2023 Automation Fair. This event, taking place from November 6-9, 2023, in Boston, Massachusetts, will demonstrate their shared vision of driving industries forward through innovation and collaboration.
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