Countless parts. One flow.

Domino

Helping ink flow smoothly

Wanted: automation expert

Domino is a British producer of printers and print supplies. For its ink production plant in Liverpool, the company wanted reliable automation experts to handle their systems, from the R&D lab to shipping to the final customer. Wonderware pointed Domino towards ONG Automation. This marked the start of a rewarding journey.

Batch manufacturing system and MES

Producing ink boils down to following a recipe. Domino’s master recipes are created in its central Cambridge R&D lab. Domino wanted to streamline production and required full control over the process, as well as records of each step. To that end, ONG Automation developed a batch manufacturing system PCS based on Rockwell and integrated this with a plant wide Wonderware MES.

After the successful implementation, a second-generation system was installed in Chicago. This plant uses a different physical manufacturing process: it is the local implementation of central recipes that the Wonderware MES manages. This allows Domino R&D to develop the master recipe without regard to the actual manufacturing equipment in a site. As an example, measurement units differ, which is why recipes are automatically converted based on the site.

Remote commissioning of a new plant

In 2019, the Liverpool plant was replaced by a higher production capacity site. This prompted updates to the batch manufacturing system and MES. The majority of this project was carried out remotely through direct VPNs into the site, in close collaboration with Domino employees on-site. Thanks to the systems developed by ONG Automation and its continuing service and support, Domino’s ink production plants run ever more smoothly.

Dynamic interaction between lab and live batch

ONG Automation’s solution reduces delays related to quality control. Previously, operators had to run back and forth between their workstation and the lab. Now, lab workers can alter the recipe in real-time from their desk by interacting with an MES client. MES validates the changes and sends them to the live recipe. In Chicago, this meant that processing time was reduced by up to thirty minutes. Throughout the process, all adjustments to the recipe are fully traceable. This has greatly reduced the complexity of doing batch investigations, as all the records are held by MES. Indeed, the system has multiple reports that specifically enable batch life cycle reporting.

Goals

  • Optimize and provide control over the ink production process
  • Reduce time and steps required for quality control
  • Implement statistics and tracking functionalities

Challenges

  • Creating bespoke systems for different plants
  • Finding answers for complex recipe alterations

Results

  • Ink production is running more smoothly
  • Up to 30 minutes of reduction in processing time thanks to dynamic recipe management
  • Complete traceability of recipes and batches
  • A solid partnership with an automation expert that knows Domino’s processes

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