"A digital twin can be defined, fundamentally, as an evolving digital profile of the historical and current behaviour of a physical object or process that helps optimize performance. The digital twin is based on massive, cumulative, real-time, real-world data measurements across an array of dimensions. These measurements can create an evolving profile of the object or process in the digital world that may provide important insights on system performance, leading to actions in the physical world" (Deloitte).
"The real power of a digital twin — and why it could matter so much — is that it can provide a near-real-time comprehensive linkage between the physical and digital worlds. It is likely because of this interactivity between the real and digital worlds of product or process that digital twins may promise richer models that yield more realistic and holistic measurements" (Deloitte).
Now if the engineered object is an on-body assistive tech device (e.g. an orthotic), a mobility product, or sensor enabled clothing, then we get real time data on the health outcomes of a PERSON, as opposed to just a machine. This is a huge help for people with chronic health conditions, the aged, the disabled or better still for the first time offering a proactive real-time illness prevention capability.
Industry 4.0 technology now enables the consumer to be directly included in a co-design process, and we can therefore highly personalise the end-product, sensors and data required precisely to their needs.
The Australian disability workforce will have to increase by more than 50,000 FTE before 2020 (yes that’s less than 2 years = 2020). We got another 150,000+ aged care employees to train up over the next decade. This has a major positive economic impact in the short term. Not planning for 2030, training and innovating NOW with real and budgeted $$$ for an industry segment that Aust is really good at, and one that will not go away.
Both Govt and training institutions need to actively work to fill these new work roles or miss a great jobs growth opportunity. Sadly, neither are giving it much attention, despite the STEM agenda. ... and the jobs are exciting future industry STEM jobs - in both healthcare and manufacturing.
To do all this successfully in a ‘Consumer Directed Care’ (CDC) environment we will need consumers, care workers and engineers to work together across industry boundaries and be jointly involved in creating highly personalised, ‘continuum of care’ health packages. VR & AR are beneficial, but new technologies such as IoT and digital twins will be much more impactful for CDC.
These are just a few of at least 10 new technologies that make up Industry 4.0. With ‘Consumer Directed Care’ now compulsory for NDIS at $22B p.a. and In-Home Aged Care at $4.7B p.a. (plus another $1.6B p.a. in the 2018 budget) this is Australia’s biggest and most immediate Industry 4.0 and STEM jobs opportunity.
IT IS NOT ROCKET SCIENCE - chronic conditions, aged care (frailty mgt), rehabilitation, disability and even prevention all need a 'Continuum of Care' services model, with data tracking. This is very different from our expensive transactional Acute Care services model. With Billions of $$$ spent every year on this the Govt can benefit from a massive ROI on their healthcare budget bottom line.
No other country in the world is implementing ‘Consumer Directed Care’ (CDC) on the size and scale that Australia is. If Industry 4.0 is the leap to cyber-physical systems and cyber-human systems, then Digital Twin implementations with sensor technology applied to real-time monitoring and proactive outcomes for real people (v’s machines) is something we should be moving towards as a global differentiation for the country. Now that's real Industry 4.0 thinking.
ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES – A SIGNIFICANT MANUFACTURING OPPORTUNITY
Author : Steve Zanon
Australia is in a unique position to be a global leader in Assistive Technologies and an international centre for Disability and Ageing Healthcare development. Australia holds a leadership position in the Asia-Pacific region in these health sectors - a market with both essential and perpetual global demand.
WHAT ARE ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGIES?
Assistive Technology refers to the breadth of manufactured equipment, or technical interventions, in the home, in the workplace and for mobility and transportation that are needed by people who are ageing, disabled or rehabilitating from injury. These technologies might be high tech applications, personalised devices to meet individual needs, or they may be as mainstream as a mobile phone put to innovative use. Combined with appropriate health care services, this technology enables people to participate as fully and independently as possible in both community life and in the workforce. It provides many opportunities that they otherwise wouldn’t have.
WHAT WOULD AN ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY SECTOR LOOK LIKE?
This industry sector would drive new partnerships between businesses, researchers, health services and training providers. New local economies would evolve around advanced manufacturing, equipment modification and installation, aged care services, and IoT/sensors. These industries would accelerate the commercialisation of new healthcare services and products; and produce a steady stream of 21st century SMEs in a key manufacturing sector.
Within this ecosystem there would likely be a cluster management service, similar to those in Europe, which would be external to, but aligned with the major government funders. It would stimulate innovation and competition at both individual and sector level, and help to enable the competitive supply of highly personalised product offerings.
THE SCALE OF THE OPPORTUNITY
A snapshot of the Assistive Technologies market data gives a sense of the scale of the opportunity, and points to areas where efficiencies can be achieved;
WHAT’S IN IT FOR MANUFACTURERS
Manufacturing and technology companies are interested in tapping into this market for many good reasons …
With rollout of the NDIS and the expansion of the aged care sector, the vast majority of Assistive Technology will now need to be installed in the local environment (i.e. in-home, in workplaces and for transportation/mobility needs). As such, the sector will require many apprentice and TAFE skilled personal as well as high-end design engineers. Due to the on-site installation, personalisation, refurbishment and maintenance requirements, the ratio of blue collar to white collar workers will be significantly higher. Assistive Technology is therefore a sector crying out for both white and blue collar manufacturing skillsets. This provides a great opportunity to increase employment prospects in regions hit hardest by the downturn in traditional manufacturing.
As the NDIS scales and the aged care industry grows, an even larger and more skilled carer workforce will be needed. These are areas of high employment growth, yet are in structural transition with the introduction of Consumer Directed Care. Both healthcare sectors have very similar skill requirements and high turnover rates. They should therefore be high on the list of local education providers. The NDIA forecasts that an additional 50,000 jobs new jobs will be needed across Australia by Dec 2019, including over 16,000 in Victoria. The NDIA will fund these new jobs through its reimbursement of disability services. A similar volume of replacement jobs will be needed in aged care.
GOVERNMENT AND BUSINESS SUPPORT
A number of factors indicate the readiness of both government and business to embrace the opportunity around Assistive Technologies;
WHAT WOULD SUCCESS LOOK LIKE?
A thriving industry ecosystem would deliver;
Historically, the economic success of most cities and regional areas has been built on their unique competitive strengths. The future will be no different. These are its differentiators, which have enabled it to generate both wealth and jobs to support the local community. However, strengths are not static and are continually subject to decline and change, in line with our ever-transforming world. Ongoing success hinges on a region’s ability to plan for, develop and renew its strengths in line with major economic opportunities as they present themselves.
In recent years, more and more economists have realised that there is huge untapped growth potential in cross-sectoral cooperation. They are therefore looking beyond the borders of industrial sectors and see the benefits in integrating different industries to create substantially improved value chains. While any region cannot be ‘all things to all people’, one of the best things it can do is to link up its strengths such that the economic output it produces is more than just the sum of its parts. This allows local companies much greater collaboration opportunities, to better differentiate themselves and to create a stream of higher value-added products and services.
The good news is that Australia has all the key ingredients to execute on a major 21st century industry convergence opportunity. The county’s strengths in the healthcare, manufacturing and education sectors could be aligned to create a global ‘Smart Specialisation’ around ‘Consumer Directed Care’ (CDC). CDC is a personalised ‘continuum of care’ model which is now compulsory for both Disability Services (NDIS) and in-home Aged Care.
Consumer Directed Care is an approach to the planning and management of care, which allows consumers and carers more power to influence the design and delivery of the products and services they receive. It allows them to exercise a much greater degree of choice in what services are delivered, where and when they are delivered. The NDIS is currently rolling out it’s $22B per annum in funding for CDC, with 2018-19 being the scale-up years. This is a significant new (government funded) revenue stream for industry to target, which will deliver much improved social outcomes.
‘Consumer Directed Care’ is a major extension to our Universal Healthcare system. But more than that, this is our entrée into ‘Value Based Healthcare’, an emerging 21st century model. Participating in this new global value chain provides a unique quality value-added advantage for our economic development into the 21st century, both locally and subsequently for exporting into Asia.
The most effective path in developing Innovation Hubs is when a community takes it upon itself to define and act on its own social and economic vision. Government’s role is to facilitate the local community’s construction of a pragmatic, step-by-step roadmap and implementation plan for its industry sectors as they transition to service new 21st century needs.
The European 'Smart Specialisation' model for developing industry clusters is based on combining as many local core strengths as possible and aligning them into a new or emerging 21st century value chain. Industry convergence is a key driver.
The next generation of Assistive Technology is a key enabler for our transition to Consumer Directed Care. It provides the platform for a series of important steps forward for our disability and aged care services. The NDIS recognise this and are providing $1B per annum in new funding specifically for Assistive Technology products. The introduction of Industry 4.0 technology, the integration of sensors, and blockchain for managing new tradable digital assets, will be transformative.
Assistive Technology refers to the breadth of manufactured equipment, or technical interventions, in the home, workplace and for transportation/mobility that are needed by people who are ageing and frail, disabled or rehabilitating from injury. These devices might be highly specialised, personalised to meet individual needs, or they may be as mainstream as a walking stick or an iPad put to innovative use. Combined with appropriate health care services, this equipment enables people to participate as fully and independently as possible in community life.
Assistive Technology provides an appealing “sweet spot” intersection between two of the government’s targeted growth industries – Advanced Manufacturing (a horizontal industry) & Medical Technologies (a vertical industry). These are both key planks of the government’s innovation agenda and are strong areas of industry focus for Australia. Industry 4.0 is a key technology platform that will help facilitate the transition to Consumer Directed Care, moving local industry up the value chain and underpinning state-of-the-art healthcare solutions well into the 21st century.
Industry 4.0 technology now enables the consumer to be directly involved in a co-design process, and we can therefore highly personalise manufactured products precisely to their needs. But to do this successfully in a ‘Consumer Directed Care’ environment we will need researchers, engineers, clinicians and consumers to work across industry boundaries and be jointly involved in creating highly personalised ‘continuum of care’ health packages, which the NDIS will fund.
Moving forwards with barely a glance in the rear-view mirror we wanted to de-commission in Part 1, it’s all about future prospects – and how not to sleep through the signals and previews.
An opinion piece was syndicated looking at international developments and dynamics.
The full document can be accessed via:
or an email to Group@LowCarbonMobility.com will cause a transcription to self-park in your inbox.
“Willing customers are the vital starting point, and not some inconvenient statistical factor in an otherwise inspirational narrative.”
Let’s stay with customers, collectively known as ‘markets’. Global demand for Light Duty Vehicles – cars, vans and derivatives such as utes – is on a 2.5 times growth trajectory 2002-2030 that will require ‘the industry’ (in whatever future form) to supply tens of millions of extra units every year.
The customer base is not shrinking – and 75% of this stellar growth is happening in non-OECD markets. ‘Commercial geographies’ – production operations, supply chains and channels-to-market – will be quite distinct from the modus operandi of the first automotive century.
It’s all about developing capabilities [industrialisation] for competitive positioning via capacity building [commercialisation] in exposed international markets – themselves experiencing much turbulence due to the antics of established players and the clock ticking on traditional fuels.
Following ‘Is it worth it?’ there’s a section that addresses ‘Can we do it?’ that also explodes a few myths about assembly plants and supply chains of yesteryear: smart manufacturing for New Mobility – including onshore – no longer needs to exclude the regions. .
… the field of vison is much bigger, it’s in front of us and is therefore ‘future’ and can only be reached by moving forwards.
That’s a clue to what will be a recurring theme, namely that ‘relevant innovation’ is directional and delivers progress – however measured in a specific context. Anything else is either ’change’, which can move sideways or backwards, or just hyped-up complexity – and that fails the ‘progress delivery test’ big time, as well as soaking up financial and expert resources.
Back to the plot.
Last year – fully cognisant of the clock ticking for a shrinking onshore ‘car industry’ – the Founders’ Group of MotM updated an earlier piece that had been the basis of a Government submission.
The full document can be accessed via:
or an email to Group@LowCarbonMobility.com will cause a transcription to park in your inbox.
Meanwhile, as a scene setter for BlogVolk on the run, page 2 highlights are reproduced here:
Background to 2016 update
Members of the Manufacturing on the Move [MotM] Leadership Group collaborated early 2014 on the compilation of ‘A New Automotive Industry Future for Australia’ – a sector supplement to the preceding work ’Securing Australia's Manufacturing Future‘ .
Much of the content released 24th February 2014 is still valid, such that we are republishing and adding this summary note on ‘2016 key factors’:
"The intent of this stream is not yet another industry post mortem – we’re at where we’re at, and it doesn’t have to be all bad. The next edition will shed some light on what’s out there in our new windscreen forward vision, down the highway to wherever."