Renault Group

Industry 4.0, production plants shaped by the future


Our production system is future-focused, undergoing a major transformation in response to the changing challenges of the automotive industry and the expectations of our customers. The 4.0 revolution is ushering in new business functions, new skills and new tools. It is the driving force behind a connected, agile and competitive production base.


An illustration of this digital shift is our recent partnership with Google Cloud.

With an ambitious objective: a sharing of industrial and technological experience between two leaders to encourage the creation of new industrial solutions. This ambition illustrates the continuation of our digital transformation, initiated in 2016: connecting our production sites, managing industrial data, transforming our logistics processes around the world, with the aim of continuously improving our standards of excellence. At the heart of this plan, our teams will have the opportunity to strengthen their data culture, with coworking sessions and high-level training with Google teams.


People and robots, hand in hand

In the production plant of the future, the production line resembles a futuristic ballet.

Robots and machines of all sorts work alongside human operators. Automatic trolleys zip around continuously, carrying the required kits, articulated arms help operators in their work, a cobot or collaborative robot fits parts with a high degree of precision, alongside an operator...

In industry 4.0, people and robots work together.

The cobot and operator share the same work space. With the cobot, the operator is able to work in greater comfort. Through an approach based on co-activity, the cobot provides the power while the human provides the expertise.
Simple to program, easy to handle and flexible, cobots can carry out a variety of tasks based on the operator’s requirements. They can also work in different areas of the plant, depending on production requirements.
robots in our plants
Our perspective:
With the continuous increase in product customization to satisfy customer expectations and the presence of connected project managers, the 4.0 plant allocates the heaviest and most repetitive tasks to robots: handling unwieldy parts or part picking. This takes the strain off the operators who are thereby able to concentrate on tasks of greater added value, such as the quality of engine or vehicle assembly. The 4.0 plant has an essential component at its core: people!
It’s a real revolution. The energy of the cobot needs to be controlled since there is always somebody next to it. The movements mustn’t be too fast. A shared pace of work needs to be established, based on task-sharing.
Cobot Manager, Séville plant (SPAIN)

Virtual reality, real progress!

With VR, we train operators, anticipate maintenance issues and conduct production line simulations that resemble reality as closely as possible. For example, we can study how best to integrate a new part on the line and optimize configuration. As a result, we can carry out all sorts of tests and adjustments without interrupting the flow.

VR optimizes skills development and raises awareness of safety. Using new training modules, VR helps operators to familiarize themselves with their working environment and also with any new equipment prior to deployment in the plant.
VR makes it possible to visualize the production line and carry out virtual modifications. The objective? To approve a new workstation layout or add equipment to the line, while planning for any unforeseen events.
people followed VR training in Brazil
Our perspective:
VR can be used to model the production line and make sure in advance that space is used efficiently. We can also study the best way to build several versions of a vehicle without stopping the lines for reconfiguration. The virtual and real worlds are synchronized. This improves on-site productivity. With respect to learning, VR ensures that trainees learn the right techniques and movements safely. VR is an essential tool in industry 4.0, delivering benefits that are both economic and operational.
Here we deploy all digital themes. For training, Virtual Reality (VR), used as a complement to practical cases, allows us to learn by example. At the forefront of this approach, we worked with a local VR/3D startup to develop immersive and fun virtual tours with them.
Lean and Digital Manager, Cléon plant (FRANCE)

Total traceability, nothing is wasted!

Total traceability is one of the pillars of digital transformation, one of the main driving forces in the 4.0. plant.

As part of an approach to maximize quality, the Full Track and Trace project provides the history of the vehicle as it is put together, rather like an ID card! We can see the context in which it was built, who by, and we can track it through to delivery. The customer has access to all the stages preceding vehicle reception.

The Packaging Managing System tracks every parcel. As packaging can be expensive – sometimes costing more than the part inside – real-time tracking is a major objective. In this way, the plant is able to keep a tight rein on inventory and procurement. All efforts are made to avoid disrupting production.

RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chips are positioned on the parts or integrated into the labels stuck on the packaging. They store information and are associated with a database throughout the vehicle manufacturing process.
The data collected by the RFID chips is stored in a database and a QR code engraved on the part provides instant access. RFID chips make it possible to control the quality of each part until it is delivered to the customer.
LoRa Sensors
Our perspective:
Full traceability is at the core of our approach to quality. It also contributes to cost efficiency. By improving part identification, standardizing traceability, associating a part with a production process and implementing geolocation data, we are able to track logistics in real time. We save time in managing inventory, which is sized to the minimum necessary. In the plants, various technologies such as RFID chips and the LoRa protocol (Long Range) are used.
New technologies create value for our business. We have made real savings in packaging. We are proud to have developed the first Alliance logistics flow featuring geolocated packaging, using LoRa technology. This protocol allows small amounts of data to be collected in real time, with great accuracy and customization.
Senior Manager Logistics, Pitesti plant (ROMANIA)

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