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EMO Hannover 2019

Smart Technologies Drive the Production of Tomorrow

| Author / Editor: Gerda Kneifel / Alexander Stark

EMO Hannover 2019, the world's leading trade fair for metalworking, will take place from 16 to 21 September and will be held under the motto "Smart technologies driving tomorrow's production!".

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"The past EMO Hannover has already shown that industry 4.0 has arrived in the machine tool industry," says Carl Martin Welcker, Commissioner General of EMO Hannover 2019.
"The past EMO Hannover has already shown that industry 4.0 has arrived in the machine tool industry," says Carl Martin Welcker, Commissioner General of EMO Hannover 2019.
( Source: Emo Hannover )

The show will focus on the paradigm shift in industrial production. Industrial production will no longer focus on (just) "better, faster, more accurate", but also on the development and implementation of new functions within the framework of Industry 4.0. Digitization and intelligent networking in combination with many new developments — ranging from big data to data analysis, artificial intelligence and platform economy — will create the basis for new business models that will enable customers and suppliers to achieve a new level of productivity.

"The past EMO Hannover has already shown that Industry 4.0 has arrived in the machine tool industry," says Carl Martin Welcker, Commissioner General of EMO Hannover 2019, "We are continuing this by focusing on the next development step in production as the world's leading innovation platform: the technical possibilities of digitization and networking, which are increasingly reflected by new business models," continues Welcker. "This does not mean that we will no longer strive to optimize machines and processes in the traditional sense. I am convinced, however, that quantum leaps in productivity, quality and reliability will primarily emerge from the new technologies. Therefore, in 2019, we will see a plethora of solutions implementing new services for customers in the machine tool industry."

Making Data Usable in a Smart Way

For new business models to be implemented on a broad scale, the immense amount of data generated by the digitization and networking of machines and processes must first be reduced to a usable level. Only those who extract the relevant data from Big Data (Smart Data) can benefit from Industry 4.0. Scientists of the Wissenschaftliche Gesellschaft für Produktionstechnik (WGP) published a guideline for action in their position paper Industry 4.0 last year. They showed, for example, how Big Data can be controlled with the data mining method. In addition to this manual, the professors of the WGP contribute their cutting-edge expertise to other bilateral projects between industry and science. Last but not least, they use EMO Hannover to present their projects with industrial partners to a global audience.

Using Artificial Intelligence

In recent years, artificial intelligence (AI) has made amazing breakthroughs. One sub-area, Machine Learning, enables machines and processes to optimize their own performance with the help of Smart Data. They recognize patterns in data streams and derive actions from them. The system learns from every situation.

Artificial intelligence has already arrived in everyday life. The VDMA has published the study "Machine Learning 2030", which is to be understood as a kind of roadmap, so that mechanical engineering also benefits from it. The recommendations to companies, politics and research are currently being substantiated and implemented in a VDMA working group. It is only a matter of time before this future scenario also finds its way into the factories. The automotive industry, for example, is already relying heavily on artificial intelligence and is engaging in cooperations in this field. One example is the collaboration of Mercedes-Benz and the graphics chip manufacturer Nvidia. Together they want to put an AI-based vehicle on the road within the next few years. Machine tool manufacturers also have a great deal of potential in the field of artificial intelligence.

Using New Economic Structures

The fact that new economic structures are developing on the basis of Industry 4.0 applications is visible on an almost daily basis. More and more platforms are emerging where manufacturers and service providers can supply customers with products from a single source. It is therefore also important for machine tool manufacturers to seize the opportunity and engage themselves in this field now. The trend towards platform economy is undeniable, current studies show.

There are already several examples, such as Virtual Fort Knox, a cloud IT platform for manufacturing companies developed by the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA in Stuttgart. It functions as an IT backbone for Industry 4.0 solutions and connects manufacturing companies with software providers and machine builders. However, IT companies, control and machine manufacturers also offer their solutions. "We can see how new technologies are influencing and even driving development in the machine tool industry," says Commissioner Welcker. "Many practical solutions will be available on the market by September 2019. I am sure of that, because many EMO exhibitors will use this international showcase to position and distinguish themselves with their products and services".

Industry 4.0 creates new customer needs to which machine builders must respond in order to remain competitive. Those who get involved in this new form of economy at an early stage cannot only use the trend for developing new business concepts, but also actively shape the development of these platforms. Interested parties will have the chance to gain new inspiration and discover genuine examples of innovative solutions in Hanover in September 2019.

This article was first published by MM MaschinenMarkt

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