System News
Using eFactory to Integrate Manufacturing Operations
A Java Technology-based Sun Initiative
September 22, 2003,
Volume 67, Issue 4

eFactory, an initiative from Sun, uses JavaTM technology as the heart of new production control systems that bring visibility to the plant floor, especially in the automotive industry, and enable up-to-date management of the supply chain. Sun's eFactory initiative integrates and Web-enables the diverse systems and devices found across the shop floor using Java technology as the centerpiece.

Java technology-based eFactory can be applied to every level of the manufacturing system architecture, from real-time controller to supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and human machine interface (HMI) systems that provide supervisory control, manufacturing-execution systems (MES) that manage plant operations, enterprise resource planning (ERP) and other back-office systems that run the enterprise, and supply-chain management and execution systems that choreograph the movement of raw-component and finished-goods inventories through the distribution system from upstream supplier to the dealership.

Java technology can break several key bottlenecks including:

  • System-architecture barriers that have isolated the plant floor from the rest of the manufacturing enterprise

  • The B2B systems that have limited the ability for trading partners to collaborate in supply-chain and production strategies

Because Java technology is not a mere control system, it allows users to outline a soft migration path that encompasses legacy systems and easily integrates them with current B2B solutions. As a key member of the Java technology developer community, Sun is your trusted advisor in putting the eFactory together.

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Other articles in the Manufacturing section of Volume 67, Issue 4:

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