100 Japanese manufacturers harness blockchain to share data
Nikkei -- Jun 17
Mitsubishi Electric and Yaskawa Electric are among 100 major Japanese manufacturers set to share production data with each other to improve efficiency, using blockchain technology to ensure their information remains secure, Nikkei has learned.

Manufacturers have closely guarded the data gathered at their factories because it contains know-how directly linked to competitiveness. But now they believe sharing that data securely will bolster performance. This project lets participants decide how much data to share, whether to share it with one or more companies, as well as whether to charge a fee for the information.

The project, expected to begin next spring, will be overseen by the Industrial Value Chain Initiative, a manufacturers group that launched in 2015 to promote the "internet of things" in Japan. Companies previously have worked on their own to make use of internet of things data in factories.

DMG Mori and other machine tool makers that are highly competitive globally are expected to join. Yet the project aims to lift Japan's manufacturing sector as a whole by attracting not just big corporations with advanced production technologies but also smaller players that are unable to invest large sums.

The sharing will include product design data, the status of production equipment and quality inspection information.

For example, parts suppliers could begin mass production faster if an electronics manufacturer shares the data from computerized numerical control machine tools.

News source: Nikkei
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