Transfer milestone in Kaiserslautern
- SmartFactoryKL and ARENA2036 organize comprehensive network meeting
- Transfer boost for selected KoPa35C projects
The meeting agenda focused on the asset administration shell (AAS) and data rooms. The discussions among the participants clearly showed an appreciation of the need for dialogue. “Joining forces is an important step. Basically, the technical issues are very similar for all companies,” said Stephan Hamm, co-organizer of the SmartFactoryKL (SF-KL) meeting. “It was no small effort to get so many companies that are working on implementing the administration shell to agree to sit down at the same table. But, it was definitely worthwhile,” added Georg Schnauffer from ARENA2036, also a member of the planning team.
Transfer as a state of mind
“Discussing issues together is by no means a given in German industry,” said Prof. Martin Ruskowski, chairman of the management board of SmartFactoryKL. “Our working groups have been doing this successfully for years, but many others are more worried that the competition might learn too much.” The participants in various consortium research projects are experiencing how constructive such joint discussions can be. “Always working against each other does not yield meaningful results,” said Carsten Brüggemann from Pfalzkom, a company working on data rooms in Project TWIN4TRUCKS. Svenja Knetsch from the Transfer4Production project said, “We need a long term, transfer mindset in which we share more results and experiences.” That was also recognized, for example, at the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) which also took part in the meeting. On the occasion of its 35th anniversary, “Transfer” was named as one of the 5 key tasks for the research center in the coming years. Martin Ruskowski, as head of a research department at DFKI says, “We can continue to improve the technology, but if nobody understands why we are doing it and the promise it provides, we will remain in an ivory tower, and that is exactly what we don’t want.”
Cooperation as a prerequisite
Experts attending the transfer meeting were happy to share their experiences concerning asset administration shells (AAS) and data rooms. The SICK & SCHUNK Company joined the discussion online and triggered an exciting exchange among the representatives from Homag, Pfalzkom, Eviden, Fraunhofer IOSB, Daimler Truck, VDI TZ, Festo, Dräxlmaier Group, Pilz, Coroplast Group, Zeiss Group, Komax, and EKS-Intec. These companies are involved in the KoPa35c projects AdaProQ, SDM4FZI, TooliNG, TWIN4TRUCKS, VWS4LS, and Transfer-X. Sick& Schunk has already begun to implement the vision of digital twins and data rooms at their company. “Many others report similar efforts and results. It makes good sense to share experience in order to avoid duplicating work,” said Ruskowski.
The need for a common approach was voiced again and again. “It is easier to make technical progress when we have a framework,” said Carsten Brüggemann. Great hope is also placed in the predefined rules and standards of Manufacturing-X initiative. “Many companies, especially in difficult economic times, do not have the financial or human resources on their own to drive joint research projects forward. Government support for associations, research institutions, and companies is crucial in establishing an organized framework of common standards,” said Martin Ruskowski.
Further meetings to develop common solutions are planned as part of the cross-project collaboration under KoPa35c in Kaiserslautern.