How Simulation-Based Digital Twins and the Industrial Internet of Things Can Improve Product and Process Performance
Simulation has long been used to improve the design of nearly every physical product or process by providing the opportunity to evaluate a wide range of alternative designs prior to building physical prototypes. Simulation has also long been used to model different operating scenarios to develop control strategies that are incorporated into control algorithms to improve operations. The emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) has created the potential for a transformational journey in which a simulation model of the product or process is tied through the Internet to sensors capturing data and to actuators controlling its operation. The result is a so-called digital twin of the physical product or process that can be used to analyze and diagnose its operation and optimize its performance and maintenance in real time. By using simulation in conjunction with the IoT, companies can analyze the performance of products in real-world operating conditions and make confident predictions about future performance to improve product operation and productivity, and to reduce the cost and risk of unplanned downtime.