Multinational factories are looking to standardise on application-specific equipment used in production lines, as well as quality and safety standards.
With South African factories generally having caught up with global standards, most of the planned upgrades will be focused on automation, according to SEW Eurodrive South Africa sales engineer Willem Strydom.
“With increased quality standards comes financial impact, owing to capital investment in new equipment and loss of production time. I believe that the relatively low production costs, and access to new markets, put local industry players in a very favourable position going forward, especially for exports.”
However, there are some plants across the various original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) that were not prioritised with previous upgrades. “These will possibly also be upgraded to meet the latest quality and automation standards,” Strydom predicts.
In this regard, South Africa has world-class OEMs that provide turnkey solutions to the local automotive industry OEMs. “We partner with these on different levels, from consultation stage to supplying the right products for their applications, and also on-site technical assistance for final commissioning,” Strydom elaborates.
He reveals that SEW Eurodrive South Africa is “involved in designing various new solutions for projects at local vehicle manufacturers”.
Its electrified monorail system and components are used throughout various local manufacturing and assembly plants.
This system includes its MOVI-PLC motion and logic controller, MOVIPRO decentralised controller, and MOVIDRIVE inverter, all with integrated safety to meet global standards. These systems also include its reliable and proven geared motor range.
“The automation of production and assembly lines is definitely at the forefront of the automotive component industry. With automation comes great possibilities to increase production in various ways that are safe and more efficient,” Strydom comments.
In this regard, SEW Eurodrive has a big research and development business unit that keeps it at the forefront of designing cutting-edge technology for the automotive industry.