Automation in the Textile Industry

Instructor: LeRon Haire
In this lesson, the term automation will be defined. We'll look at how it has improved the textile industry along with its advantages and disadvantages.

What is Automation

Automation has helped the production of cotton.

The textile industry, which has been around for centuries, has made many strides thanks to the advent of automation. The term automation is defined as the use of equipment and machinery to help make production easier and more efficient. Textiles such as cloth, yarn, cotton, and other fabrics have been made easier to produce thanks to automation. Let's take a look at the advantages, disadvantages, and transformation automation has had in the textile industry.

Advantages of Automation in the Textile Industry

Fewer Work Hours for the Same Production

Automation made it possible for the same tasks to be performed but with fewer hours of labor for employees. For example, inventions such as Eli Whitney's cotton gin made it possible to separate the seeds from cotton without using manual labor. Similar inventions of automation were created with the purpose of making textile-related jobs easier to perform and with less human labor.

Safer Working Conditions

Automation in the textile industry has provided safer working conditions for employees. The textile industry is known for transforming various cloths and fibers into fabrics. This process often includes dyeing and spinning which are textile processes that can be relatively dangerous to an individual. Automation has created equipment to handle the bulk of these processes, making working conditions safer for all in the textile industry.

Higher Quality Product

As with any industry, high quality products stand above all. The same goes for the textile industry, and automation makes this possible. When humans are tasked with a duty, there is always room for error for various reasons: they don't feel well, personal company vendettas, etc. Although there are times when mistakes may occur with the equipment, there is still a much lower probability for error than when humans perform the same job.

For example, if an employee were to separate the seeds from cotton manually, there may always be the possibility that the person may become fatigued or perhaps simply not vested in completing the job properly. This means that it may not be done to the best of their ability.

Disadvantages of Automation in the Textile Industry

High Investment

In many parts of the world, the textile industry may pay below average for jobs that are performed by humans. The use of automation includes machinery and equipment that will typically come at a high cost. Due to equipment's various parts and ability to perform multiple tasks simultaneously, costs may often range anywhere from thousands to even millions of dollars.

Reduced Skill Level of Workers

With automation completing the bulk of duties in the textile industry, there is no need for companies to search for highly-skilled employees to perform the job duties. This lack of knowledge and experience may prove costly in certain situations. For example, a highly-skilled worker may be able to solve an issue with equipment or machinery that malfunctions. On the other hand, low-skilled workers may not be able to correct malfunctions with automation and this could cost a company where it hurts: in the pockets.

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