In any industrial company, you could argue that the more digital twins that are in operational use, the lower the risk of failure and the higher the probability that processes are running at optimal performance — or at least inching closer to such a state.
The case for digital twins is powerful. Here’s why.
- Digital twins create a data-based model of assets or processes, so they can pave the way toward advanced techniques to anticipate and prevent equipment failures and find ways to optimize performance. They allow companies to capture data from older technology still in use and discover trends and patterns from it that feed into larger digital twin models;
- Digital twins provide detailed information about large collections of key assets in an industrial landscape, so they can help determine the best way to allocate scarce investment dollars. Digital twins make use of instrumentation in the industrial landscape. Where instrumentation is not available, other means such as mobility is used to provide inputs. This also highlights gaps and allows for informed and differentiated decisions about where to invest in new assets or upgrades to existing assets. For some assets, run to failure is the appropriate choice. In those cases, digital twins do not make sense;
- Digital twins expand a culture of data-based decision-making, thus supporting all sorts of ways to continuously improve performance. With digital twins, you can do more predictive and condition-based maintenance on your assets, which helps to improve overall performance in the long-term. If you have the right anomaly detection in place with your digital twin, you can detect problems far earlier than you would be able to otherwise. This allows you to plan rather than react when problems inevitably arise. This type of proactive approach also allows businesses to prevent problems from happening in the first place.
Jeff Bezos metaphorically pounded the table about API adoption in the infamous Yegge Rant. CEOs at industrial firms should do the same for digital twins.