OT and IT integration is cornerstone of all Industry 4.0 use cases: Rajesh Gharpure, LTI

OT and IT integration is the cornerstone of all Industry 4.0 use cases, as per Rajesh Gharpure, L&T Infotech

Pradeep Chakraborty
New Update
Industry 4.0

LTI is a global technology consulting and digital solutions company helping several clients succeed in a converging world. With operations in 33 countries, it goes the extra mile for clients and accelerate their digital transformation journeys.


Here, Rajesh Gharpure, EVP and Global Head, Industry 4.0, L&T Infotech (LTI), tells us more about the company’s foray into Industry 4.0 and beyond. Excerpts from an interview.

DQ: How are you laying the foundation—connectivity and a unified IT/OT digital platform—for Industry 4.0 use cases?

Rajesh Gharpure: OT and IT integration is the cornerstone of all Industry 4.0 use cases, whether smart manufacturing, connected products, or smart spaces. It enables cross-functional analytics and contextualization of operations performance with the financial matrix. To unify IT and OT, LTI leverages the Industry X.0 Canvas (IXC) framework with assessment templates, playbooks, and a library of use cases.


Rajesh Gharpure.

We leverage the visibility layer of the IXC framework, which is rich in IT-OT collaboration scenarios and cross-functional analytics. We have both open protocol connectors and our custom build connectors enabled by the cyber security framework to collect data from disparate systems, including legacy systems. Our expertise in device engineering and sensorization optimization also enables us to unleash data from the non-networked siloed OT layer. We capitalize our Industrial data model and catalogue to build these cross-functional scenarios.

DQ: How are you reducing equipment downtime and minimizing human errors to decrease production expenses and improve quality and safety?


Rajesh Gharpure: Condition-based maintenance and failure prediction are the two common and critical uses cases that LTI has implemented for our customers. Periodic maintenance may not detect potential failures. While mean time between failures (MTBF) can be as low as one per year, the costs of such losses can be very high.

Therefore, we establish connectivity to acquire real-time data from the shop floor systems and equipment sensor data, e.g., vibration sensors for remote monitoring, and leverage technologies like Computer Vision and AI/ML to generate insights for failure prediction and quality conformance.

We have further integrated with the asset and quality management systems for several of our customers to trigger the required actions, such as creating automated maintenance work orders or lot rejection once an anomaly is detected.


DQ: What are you doing to decreasing tooling costs and lead time?

Rajesh Gharpure: LTI develops software tools that help businesses track and manage tools for their periodic calibration and maintenance cycles. Regression analysis-based machine learning models predict tool conditions in real-time, which helps increase the remaining useful life of the tool and perform coordinate tool changeover, further enhancing productivity.

Integrating these software tools with plant-wide tracking solutions helps businesses locate and collect out-of-life tools thwarting their usage on the shop floor. In addition, on-time tool calibration for high-value tools helps save significant cost by avoiding scrap due to tool breakages or quality out runs due to out-of-specification tooling.


DQ: How are you creating shortening changeovers and creating simpler process instructions to reduce training time?

Rajesh Gharpure: Changeovers between production lots are quite complex and time-consuming, depending on the nature of work performed during the machining cycle. Therefore, it is vital to ensure the correct manufacturing workflow routing and machine specifications are in place before the production of the new product or the new variant begins.

LTI leverages scheduling and routing optimization software for generating the most optimum workflow for the planned changeover. We also leverage Digital Work Instruction, one of our Smart Manufacturing accelerators, for enabling rapid and successful changeovers. These digital instructions are based on the best practices and give step-by-step processes and timelines for each task and completion verification criteria. This eliminates manual errors and helps in effective production planning. In some cases, we have also utilized A/R for operator training on changeovers procedures.


DQ: What are you doing to meeting complex customer requirements and improving delivery timing?

Rajesh Gharpure: LTI is a customer-centric services company. We have a proven track record of solving customers' unique and complex business needs with the best-fit tailored solution, ensuring quicker value realization for our customers. We approach customers' requirements through digital lenses of Transformation.

First, our domain experts from IXC practice engage with our customers and evaluate the digital maturity of the manufacturing value chain. Then, along with the business consultants, we work with different business verticals of customer organizations to develop a road map for their digitization journey.


Our solution frameworks put outcomes at the forefront and tie them directly to customers' KPIs, which helps us decode the complex requirements into the proper implementation of a successful roadmap. Agile delivery methodologies and strong governance coupled with risk management and change management approach empower us to deliver our commitments on time.

DQ: Give at least two examples of any recent Industry 4.0 deployments.

Rajesh Gharpure: There are several examples.

Example 1:

We worked with a leading multinational power management company to define their digital transformation roadmap for Factory of the Future, powered by Industry 4.0. LTI conducted value discovery workshops with all the stakeholders to define the various digital interventions across different functions. The solution was powered by an IIoT platform to enable machine connectivity, business KPI visualization, and analytics for Insights.

The solution was rolled out to 45+ sites globally, helping achieve a 15% reduction in manual effort at workstations, a 25-30% reduction in unplanned downtime through predictive maintenance, a 15% improvement in OEE, and a significant reduction in inventory cost with improved visibility of parts consumption.

Example 2:

We are engaged in a large-scale global transformation program with one of the world’s leading global elevator manufacturing companies. The broad objective of the program is to personalize the customer experience and redefine the service model. LTI addressed the need through the connected elevator solution, which leverages IoT, Cloud, and AR.

A single pane glass view enables real-time monitoring of the entire elevator portfolio with dashboards aligned to different personas (OEM, facility head, end customers), predicts failures, sends service notification to field personnel, and provides remote troubleshooting through AR. Today there are 200,000+ elevators across the U.S, China, EMEA & APAC onboarded on this platform. The solution reduced downtime of the elevators by 15% and field calls cost reduction by 10%. In addition, the connected Elevator solution helped the client manifest” Product as a service model.”

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