The “democratization” of the digital twin means companies of any size can benefit from the technology, says Guy Courtin, vice president of industry and advanced technology at Tecsys.
A digital twin, which provides a replication of the real world, is useful because of the dizzying number of connected devices and software that we continue to include in our supply chains, Courtin says. “It allows us to provide this map or this representation in a digital world of what's happening in the real world. And I think there's a lot of powerful tools and powerful things we can do with that.”
A digital twin can be enormously useful in the warehouse, for instance. Challenges there include inventory location and how the labor force interacts with material handling products and robotics. “So when you think about that, if all of a sudden now I can provide a digital representation of what's happening on the floor of my warehouse in real time, I can analyze it and I can look for efficiencies,” Courtin says. “I can look for where I might have issues with stocking or with too many robots going in the same spot, or my labor not picking properly. I can find how to better run my warehouse instead of trying it out in the real world. I could try it out in the digital world first, and then replicate it in the real world. I think that's what's really exciting about the digital twin, specifically in the warehouse for fulfillment.”
And the so-called democratization of the digital twin? “I think it was thought that you have to be a big company, a big retailer, a big distributor, a big healthcare company to use it,” Courtin says. “Now we're seeing that most companies can start taking advantage of the digital twin.”
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