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    Smart manufacturing requires much effort, says ASE COO

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    ASE Technology Holding COO Tien Wu, commenting on his experience in constructing lights-out factories, has pointed out that in order for such facilities to succeed, it requires clients’ support and market demand since the processes of manufacturing, materials selection and transportation all need to be standardized, which generates high costs from R&D and requires time to work with clients to set up the standards.

    Having sufficient capacity is also important as packaging and testing companies are serving different clients and processing different products every day. Categorizing every product’s specific portfolio for lights-out factories requires a lot of work by the operating team and much investment, Wu said.

    ASE currently has a total of nine lights-out factories that are completely developed in house and a team consisted of 400 engineers, up significantly from only four when ASE activated its smart manufacturing project in 2011, Wu noted.

    With the arrival of 5G, more end devices for applications such as those for medical care, cars, and industrial control, will appear and most clients will eventually demand complete elctronic production records, and traceability of the smart manufacturing process, Wu said, big data analysis and AI management can help the makers easily create such information for clients, which is also a new business opportunity for the makers.