AI ‘cobots’ detect aerospace supply chain non-conformance

Accenture’s John Schmidt shares examples of the power of artificial intelligence (AI) in the aerospace sector.

John Schmidt, , Global managing director for Accenture’s Aerospace and Defence business, told FINN: “We're using AI in a lot of places and in fact I think it's a groundbreaking technology for helping us deal with how to get more productivity out of our workforce, especially as we look at the shortages that we're projecting in STEM candidates. We're also concerned, in some areas of the world, about how many [people in the] workforce we have to even just do the manufacturing assembly jobs. So we see AI as a technology that's going be more of a co-worker, or some people would say ‘cobot’, and helping people get more done faster.”

AI in the supply chain

This could even be in very complex areas such as supply chain. For example, conformance processes are often handled manually using printed or handwritten information on cards.  The cards are collected and then manually cross-checked to verify that the information is correct – i.e. that the part number isn't smudged, that it matches the order, date, time, etc.

"It's a simple application, and we're trying to demonstrate in a simple way what really is a very powerful technology.”

By John Schmidt, Accenture

Schmidt explains: “We've used an AI engine with optical character recognition, to be able to take a snapshot – it can be a snapshot from a cellphone. There's a lot of different ways to get the data in, and then there's an AI engine behind which is not just verifying that part number order but is also using machine learning to improve its ability to read the handwriting that's coming in from the various people.

"It's a simple application, and we're trying to demonstrate in a simple way what really is a very powerful technology.”

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