Challenges and Benefits of Implementing a Digital Twin in Composites Manufacturing
For most companies, the idea of a digital twin is purely theoretical. The path towards implementing, and more importantly, benefitting from a digital twin is not clear. This presentation will highlight several practical challenges in implementing this tool as well as discuss multiple real-world benefits of the digital twin. Several vital steps must be taken to see real benefits, including determining what data is essential to collect, deciding how to obtain that critical data, encouraging a culture of decision-making through data, and creation and maintenance of vital supplier relationships necessary to realize a digital twin. Though the implementation is not trivial, a digital twin offers newfound opportunities to leverage gathered data to both optimize programs and allow for continuous improvement. Examples of potential optimization include part analysis resulting from manufacturing conditions, closed-loop feed rate optimization factoring in feature-based controls and their effect on layup quality, and upstream traceability of root causes to downstream issues.