future: Ambition to change the world is essential as automation spreads into
areas beyond industrial applications. See three key technology advances
expected by 2020 and a sampling of those advancements today, including mobile
Engineering China (CEC) has witnessed strong growth in the industrial control and
automation business in China, and automation will continue to expand beyond the
industry in accelerated fashion as we approach 2020. Internet of things (IoT),
system integration, and engineering services will accompany a broadening of
automation into other markets.
enterprises, both local and overseas, have gained business success and rapid
growth in the Chinese market. Most importantly, industrial enterprises improved
product quality and production efficiency through successfully deploying
advanced automation in the production process, generating enormous commercial
value. Increasing efficiency is solidifying China's status as a large-scale
factory for the world. With fierce market competition, the automation market in
China has entered the adjusting phase where growth is slowing. Reliable
automation products with long product life cycles are not short-term
consumables anymore. Will another golden decade be cultivated in the Chinese
automation market after this period of adjustment? Or will development level
off? Different people have different answers to these questions.
Trends of 2020
six years into the future for automation engineers, predicting the trends in
2020 will enlighten our next steps.
The Internet of things (IoT) now in full swing will enter a high-growth path by
2020. In a time when people and things are all connected by network, automation
engineers and end users will care most about the stability and reliability of
the industrial network. The intellectualization, collection, and detection of
data will mostly be resolved. The harder part is the troubleshooting and
reliability of the industrial network. If situations arise in the network,
whether in the business network or in the network controlling production, the
whole operation of the enterprise will confront difficulties and hinder
decision making in real time because control engineers rely on the industrial
network for assessment and indicators. The primary concern for engineers will
be the stability and reliability of the networked automation.
Future automation engineers will no longer be limited to the field of
production. Many automation projects, for example, will be implemented within
the so-called Smart City. In transportation, buildings, and health care, future
automation projects will have closer proximity to people's everyday lives. The
engineers' expertise in automation will be applied in many nontraditional
fields. These innovations will drastically change people's lives, adding
convenience. The automation system will become an important foundation for the
future construction and operation of intellectualized and automated societies.
In new markets where changes are created continuously by new applications, the
automated system and system integration will become a necessary part of the
solution. The innovation and development of products and engineering services
will become primary work for automation engineers. In some new applications,
artificial intelligence will become the spotlight that reflects the core value
See the future today
year 2020 is not far away, and the next rapid developing cycle of automation
applications might arrive sooner than expected.
a U.S. business with a global Internet search engine, Google possesses the most
abundant advertising business in the world and continues to advance in
automation-related technologies. Google Glass, launched in 2012, is undoubtedly
a great potential platform for mobile monitoring displays. This year, 2014, the
driverless vehicle project announced by Google started with Sebastian Thrun,
the director of the artificial intelligence laboratory at Stanford University.
In 2005, he led his student group to participate in a successful driverless
vehicle project launched by the U.S. Army in the desert. More recently,
Google's driverless vehicle received a driver's license in Nevada, and attended
the famous NASCAR competition, among the most elite of human-engineering
addition, the Space Aircraft No. 2 of Virgin Atlantic Airways successfully
completed its second trial flight in 2013, and the company expects commercial
space aviation as early as in 2014. That means outer space travel and gradual
realization of high-speed commercial global flight.
screen in many science fiction films, the immersion VR platform is a finished
product in the innovation lab of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
data and cloud computing offer the magic power of prediction, making this another
future invention with mature mass applications today.
popularization of each of these landmark applications has created new
opportunities for the development of automation.
Opportunities, automation, integration
present, China is still in a phase of rapid development, and changes have been
taking place everywhere. Some of those changes or variables are cultivated
within China and from the global market. Looking to 2020, the automation
industry in China has many opportunities. Those involved need to see beyond any
challenges and look to future impacts. In this age of rapid technology
development with effective integration, Google and Apple have created markets
for client applications, realizing the Blue Ocean Strategy with near-miraculous
value. Maybe the next great technology opportunity will come from China.
2020, however, rapid acceleration will bring such opportunities frequently.
Sufficient engineering talent in China will release their huge energy to create
marvelous value. In the mean time, we still need the determination to improve
ourselves and the ambition to change the world.
July 16, 2014, Google appointed Alan Mulally, former CEO of Ford Motor Co., as
a member of its board of directors, anticipating that he can speed development
of Google's self-driving car business with his experience in the automobile
industry. In addition to Google, many traditional automobile manufacturers,
including Ford, have started investing in research and development for
technologies for self-driving cars.
On July 16, 2014, Google appointed Alan Mulally, former CEO of Ford Motor Co., as a member of its board of directors, anticipating that he can speed development of Google's self-driving car business with his experience in the automobile industry. In addition to Google, many traditional automobile manufacturers, including Ford, have started investing in research and development for technologies for self-driving cars.