With the phenomenal growth in data sensing, storage and computing capacities as well as reduced costs, it has become easier than ever to generate large quantities of data - in a wide variety of structures, formats and across multiple industrial applications. In Rolls-Royce, data is generated in large volume and variety across the products' life cycles. The effective analysis of this data could provide valuable insights about the quality and performance of the products. In the Data Analytics & Complex Systems programme within the Rolls-Royce@NTU Corporate Lab, we are investigating state-of-the-art techniques in Data Analytics to process data from across the Rolls-Royce design, development, manufacturing and in-service applications in order to develop strategic capability for introducing step-change improvements in the products and processes.
DACS will focus on developing new capabilities in data analytics and artificial intelligence to create actionable insights from big data and to aid decision making across our businesses and product lifecycle.
DACS programme has developed and demonstrated data analytics and machine learning capabilities broadly across Rolls-Royce’s product lifecycle – design, make, inservices and repair-overhaul.
Some tangible benefits were derived from the application of the capabilities not just within the company but also for our external customers. We have also pushed the boundary in new concepts such as transferring knowledge from past design programmes to inform the design of a new product. Having said this, the exploitation of machine learning is still nascent, particularly on the use of advanced deep learning tools as well as explanatory models which can expound the rationale of the decisions in the analytics. More opportunities are availing themselves as the businesses become more informed and aware of the possibilities.
Artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities will remain a key focus for Rolls-Royce as part of our smart digital strategy. As we push for more aggressive data collection using Internet of Things technologies to further our understanding of our products’ behaviour, we will avail more opportunities for further and more advanced exploitation of AI; especially in the push towards greater edge intelligence. The next phase of DACS will hence have a strong focus on AI capabilities.