Digital Factory showcases Industry 4.0 solutions

HANNOVER MESSE is an important arena for the fourth industrial revolution and other future-defining themes.

April 2, 2014
Manufacturing Group

Hannover, Germany, and Chicago –The term “Industry 4.0” first gained widespread currency at HANNOVER MESSE in 2011. Last year, Germany’s Industry 4.0 Working Group used HANNOVER MESSE as the setting in which to give their final report to the German federal government. It was also the venue used by the German industry associations BITKOM, VDMA and ZVEI for the launch of their joint Industry 4.0 platform. As the world’s leading trade fair for industrial technology and the No. 1 meeting place for industrial firms, industry associations, research institutions and politicians, HANNOVER MESSE is an important arena for the fourth industrial revolution and other future-defining themes. 

“As the organizers of HANNOVER MESSE, we are ideally positioned to keep close tabs on key developments in industrial technology. That’s why we spotted and took ownership of the ‘Industry 4.0’ trend very early on. It’s a good example of our mission to always stay ahead of the game and proactively tune HANNOVER MESSE’s to emerging trends which resonate strongly with our exhibitors,” said Olaf Daebler, HANNOVER MESSE head of department at Deutsche Messe. “The keynote theme for HANNOVER MESSE 2014 is Integrated Industry – NEXT STEPS, and this is closely linked with Industry 4.0 and reflects the wealth of solutions at this year’s fair that represent the next steps along the road to tomorrow’s intelligent, self-organizing factories.” The subject of “integration” will feature particularly prominently at the Digital Factory show, which sits right at the interface of industrial automation and IT. 

For the past 11 years, Digital Factory has led the way in bringing the entire manufacturing sector closer to true integration. The world’s top providers of CAx, MES, ERP, and PLM applications who regularly exhibit at Digital Factory have made it a unique marketplace for industrial software. With each new product release, these companies are taking the convergence of digital and real enterprises to a new level.

“One of the big highlights in this context is the second CAE-Forum event. There, industrial users will find everything they need to create highly realistic simulations of their future products and production processes,” Daebler said.

The exhibitors include industry leaders, such as Aucotec, Autodesk, Dassault Systèmes, Eplan, Forcam, the Fraunhofer Society, IBM Deutschland, IGE+XAO, MPDV Mikrolab, PTC, PNY, PSIPENTA, SAP Deutschland, and Siemens Industry Software. This year’s first-time Digital Factory exhibitors include the following German companies: PROSTEP, a product data integration solutions provider specializing in PLM, 3D Fab, an additive manufacturing technology startup, and SALT Solutions, a provider of software solutions for production, logistics and multi-channel sales.

“Digital Factory 2014 is shaping up to be a big success. This April, some 200 companies will use 61,350 square feet of exhibition space to showcase the latest digital tools for intelligent product development and manufacturing. About 5,380ft2 will be occupied by first-time exhibitors,” Daebler explained.

Industry 4.0 is the future of industry, and HANNOVER MESSE is the place where pioneers showcase what they have achieved so far to make it happen – everything, from the digital product development and manufacturing IT solutions on show at Digital Factory to the manufacturing and automation hardware on show at HANNOVER MESSE’s other flagship fairs. The exhibits are complemented by a comprehensive lineup of forums and events where scientists and practitioners present and debate the best approaches to realizing the Industry 4.0 vision. This April, the Industrial IT Forum in Hall 8 will once again bridge the gap between the state-of-the-art digital industrial environments showcased in Hall 7 and the “real world” of the latest industrial automation solutions on show throughout the Hannover Exhibition Center, including right next door in Hall 9.

HANNOVER MESSE played a key role in the development of the Industry 4.0 vision. Now it is the forum where, once each year, global industry reports back on the latest progress in this greatest of all projects and maps out the road ahead. This is the meaning of the lead theme, Integrated Industry – NEXT STEPS,” Daebler added.

Themed displays at Digital Factory 2014
The sixth MES Conference, which will feature presentations by scientists and production and IT managers, will be held in Room 3A at the Convention Center on April 9 and 10 (Wednesday and Thursday). Wednesday’s program is dedicated to discrete manufacturing, and Thursday’s to process manufacturing. The focus on both days will be on real-life examples of fully integrated production IT systems. 

Day one will kick off with a lecture by Jürgen Kletti from MPDV Mikrolab GmbH titled “Where to from here for MES? – Tomorrow’s system landscapes.” Kletti will share fascinating insights into market trends and standardization, systems development in the context of Industry 4.0, and the vertical integration of production data. His talk will be followed by a presentation by Walter Simunek from Stiwa Holding GmbH on “Serial production in a high-labor-cost country” which will focus on data capture in serial production, the superior process overviews enabled by standardized data analysis, and ways of keeping overall costs in check and maximizing profitability. 

On day two, which will be given over to process manufacturing, Professor Martin Wollschlaeger of Dresden Technical University (TU Dresden) will talk about “MES in a time of change – How integrated production IT systems are evolving.” His lecture will cover a range of themes, including modern MES structure and functionality and the impact of current IT trends and social change on MES. Martin Wichmann from Merck KgaA will discuss “Integrated production IT systems in multi-purpose production plants in the chemicals industry.” Among much else, Wichmann will talk about the implementation of template-based solutions, horizontal data integration and results monitoring using cost/benefit analysis.

The Technology Cinema 3D showcase on 3D visualization, virtual reality and process integration has been a regular feature of the Digital Factory show since 2009. 3D technologies have come a long way in recent years and now play an integral role in mechanical engineering. This year’s Technology Cinema 3D will span some 4,300 square feet of display space and feature a host of big-name exhibitors, including Carl Zeiss and ESI Software. Themed “SIMPLIFY 3D,” the 2014 showcase sets out to demonstrate that 3D technology is now a lot simpler to use than most people think. It will present an entire development process, focusing on the improvements, simplifications and time savings that can be achieved with the aid of 3D technology. This year, the organizers are partnering with Germany’s VDC Fellbach virtual reality and virtual engineering network to supplement the Technology Cinema 3D with expert talks, interview sessions (with participation by prior arrangement) and live-streamed panel discussions. 

The group pavilion organized by Germany’s CAE-Forum computer-aided engineering network is dedicated to numerical simulation. There, computation experts and providers of numerical simulation software will show how they can help developers of new products quantify the cost implications of various production methods and end-product characteristics. They will present FEM, CFD, MBS and a whole range of other numerical simulation methods and applications that are integral to virtual product development. Numerical simulation has applications in a range of overlapping areas, including fluid dynamics, load analysis, process timing and sequencing, the selection of assembly and production processes, calculating service life and stability, and product licensing and certification processes.