Advanced Manufacturing Technology in China: A Roadmap to 2050
Manufacturing industry is the material basis of the national economy and the main industry which occupies an important position in the national economy. China is a big manufacturing country, but not a manufacturing great power, therefore developing advanced manufacturing technology has particularly great significance for the development of China’s national economy.
Manufacturing industry includes 31 departments, whose output is the main component of industrial gross output. Compared with traditional manufacturing technology, advanced manufacturing technology concerns not only manufacturing process but also market analysis, product design, machining, assembly, sales, maintenance, services and recycle.
Advanced manufacturing technology is an important and broad study field. It has been paid more attention in China and widely applied in the research and development of major equipments. Large amount of research work has been carried out in recent years.
People have been continuously discussing on the development direction of advanced manufacturing technology. Basically, they believe that the development direction of advanced manufacturing technology will be the globalization, informationization, intelligentization, greening and integration of multi-disciplines. “Looking at the evolution trends of advanced manufacturing technology, ‘green’ and ‘intelligence’ will be its main direction of development.”
In the report, intelligent manufacturing based on ubiquitous information and green manufacturing in harmony with environment are studied.
With the development and maturity of such technologies as industrial wireless networks, sensor networks, radio frequency identification and micro-electro–mechanical systems, the comprehending process of people on manufacturing technology develops from the “insufficient understanding” of manufacturing equipment and manufacturing processes, to the multi-dimensional (three-dimensional space plus time) and transparent ubiquitous sensing, which contributes to the coming of “ubiquitous information manufacturing” era–the technology of new generation information manufacturing and automation based on ubiquitous sensing with ubiquitous information technology as the main driving force. This development will also become the core driving force for the advancement of new generation advanced manufacturing technology. It is foreseeable that the new generation ubiquitous information manufacturing systems will greatly improve the manufacturing efficiency and product quality of traditional manufacturing mode, reconstruct enterprise organizations and business processes, innovate enterprise operation mode, greatly reduce product cost and resource consumption, consequently provide user with more transparent and personalized service, and will eventually become a developing direction of intelligent manufacturing based on man-machine harmony and ubiquitous information .
In the next five years, with the application of industrial wireless network, sensor network, new sensors, RFID, etc., the embryonic forms and typical applications of ubiquitous information manufacturing will appear. In the next decade, the industrial control system with ubiquitous sensing ability will be constructed, and the ubiquitous sensing will include information perception and its utilization methods, massive information processing, control management methods and the corresponding standards. This will have an inestimable impact on various fields of manufacturing industry, and will eventually achieve the transition of manufacturing system from human-machine harmony to intelligent manufacturing era of autonomous operation with machine as the main part.
Green manufacturing can efficiently utilize resources and energy without pollution and cover full life cycle of products concerning design, machining, utilization and recycle by innovating traditional manufacturing technology, design concept and production methods.
Green process is a big technology system. And the system takes resource and environment as the guidance, utilizes the concept of atom economy in substance transformation, applies the principles of species symbiosis, substance regenerative cycle and ecological integrity in natural ecology, combines with the highly effective hierarchical and multistage substance utilization of systems engineering and optimization methods design, and gives full play to the potential of material resources to reduce waste from the source. It includes the atom economic reaction of highly-effective and clean resource transformation and the green design and process intensification of separation process on the microscopic scale; the process coupling and adjustment, the optimized integration of material, energy, and information flows, and environment-oriented multi-objective optimization on the synoptic scale; and the system integration on large-scale system of ecological industry group. Green process can realize the global optimization and support the sustainable development of manufacturing industry.
As to the greening technology upgrading of the process manufacturing industry for large-scale resource transformation and utilization of minerals, oil and biomass, innovative breakthrough should be made in the green process and engineering of substance transformation and in the engineering direction of new energy, new resource alternative technology and biomass processing and refining of process industry. By 2030, in the key directions such as the new reaction medium alternative technologies, highly-efficient catalytic technology, process intensification & advanced reaction separation equipment, core technologies of resource recycling and environment, etc., green process engineering and technology will be established to substantially increase resource utilization efficiency, reduce energy consumption and decrease waste discharge. As to discrete manufacturing industry, the product green design and life cycle evaluation systems will be used widely, and non-waste machining technology and recycling and reconstruction technology for mechanical and electrical products and automotive products will be popularized. By 2030, the manufacturing process will reduce 50% of its energy consumption and raw material loss rate; its secondary resource recycling and utilization rate will reach 70% and the chemical environmental risks will be basically controlled. By 2050, the raw material loss rate of the process manufacturing can be further reduced by 90%, atom economy and selectivity of chemical conversion will be close to 100%, zero discharge of waste will be realized, and chemical environmental risks will be completely eliminated. The production system with arterial and venous integration and the advanced manufacturing system with new low-carbon economy model will be formed, greening of the process manufacturing industry will be realized, and China will enter the ranks of the advanced countries in the world.