E Ink and Hitachi: New collaboration to achieve paperless operations

E Ink, a pioneer and global commercial leader in ePaper technology, has announced its collaboration with Hitachi, Ltd. to achieve digital transformation and paperless operations in manufacturing sites at Omika Works. E Ink is helping to improve workflow and efficiency by deploying eNotes developed by E Ink's subsidiary, Linfiny Japan Inc., on Hitachi's IoT platform.

"At Omika Works, we have been investing in the digitization of internal operations, and one of the most difficult challenges in doing so was to get rid of paper media, as quality assurance work involves checking a wide variety of drawings and documents, which require printing them out," said Tatsuya Hiroki, Senior Director, Quality Assurance Division of Control System Platform, Hitachi Ltd. Omika Works. "To solve this problem, we opted for ePaper, being durable, lightweight, having low power consumption, high visibility, and a handwriting-like feel comparable to using paper, was a very suitable digital device for on-site work and would enable a smooth transition to digitalization without conventional work methods needing to be changed. The introduction of ePaper has proven not only to enable paperless operations but also to prevent checks from being omitted and to enhance management through the utilization of the input data. We expect that, by increasing the number of applications of ePaper in the future, we will be able to reduce costs, optimize labor, and strengthen compliance."

In 2023, Omika Works set up an internal network and installed a server for system integration to support the adoption of eNotes across operation sites. Since all work done with eNotes is digitized, the newly acquired digital information can be analyzed to visualize progress management and quality control, as well as to pass on skills from experienced to newer staff. To ensure compliance, the system has been enhanced to prevent data tampering and automatically capture work records—additional security functions include data encryption, device lock via employee badges, remote reset, and more.

"E Ink's ePaper can continue to display content without consuming any power once it has been displayed and has the same high visibility and reflective surface as traditional paper," said Naoki Sumita, President, E Ink Japan Inc. "We developed firmware that incorporates the needs of Hitachi's Omika Works manufacturing sites into the eNotes. We are delighted that this will contribute to the reduction of paper as a medium and improve operational efficiency. We hope to collaborate further to incorporate and evolve this solution to meet the needs of all kinds of manufacturing sites, deliver it to customers in Japan and overseas, and promote the shift to paperless operations."

As a global leader in ePaper technology, E Ink's ambitious sustainability goals include achieving RE100 by 2030—sourcing the organization's entire energy consumption from renewable sources. As of December 2023, E Ink's global operations and sales sites have achieved RE35—indicating that 35% of the energy used by the company is generated from renewable sources and is committed to reaching Net Zero by 2040.

About E Ink
E Ink Holdings Inc., based on technology from MIT's Media Lab, provides a display medium for applications spanning eReaders and eNotes, retail, home, hospital, transportation, logistics and more, enabling customers to put displays in locations previously impossible. According to an own statement, E Ink's electrophoretic display products make it the worldwide leader for ePaper. Its low power displays enable customers to reach their sustainability goals, and E Ink has pledged using 100% renewable energy in 2030 and reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2040. E Ink is a member of the Climate Pledge, has joined the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi), and has been listed as one of the Asia-Pacific Climate Leaders by the Financial Times, Nikkei and Statista in 2022. Listed in Taiwan's Taipei Exchange (TPEx) and the Luxembourg market, E Ink Holdings claims to be the world's largest supplier of ePaper displays.


Caption: The introduction of ePaper enables paperless operations. (Picture: E Ink)

<< view all news