Cyber-Physical Systems

Posted by on ott 30, 2013 in Sustainability Mission | 0 comments

Cyber-Physical Systems

Cyber-Physical Systems in textile production – the next industrial revolution?

Germany claims the fourth industrial revolution. The evolution towards Industry 4.0 is mainly based on digital technologies. Basic ideas and concepts of Industry 4.0 will be presented, including aspects like horizontal integration through value networks, end-to-end digital integration of engineering across the entire value chain and vertical integration and networked manufacturing systems. Opportunities for a realisation of Industry 4.0 within the textile industry are described. In addition also textile products such as smart textiles can lead to Industry 4.0 and will be herein presented.

1. Introduction
Germany’s industries are highly productive. Also, Germany is one of the global leaders in the manufacturing equipment sector. One reason for this is Germany’s specialisation in research and development. Also production of innovative manufacturing technologies and the management of complex industrial processes are well established in Germany.
Germany’s strong machinery and plant manufacturing industry, its globally significant level of IT competences and its know-how in embedded systems and automation engineering mean that it is extremely well placed to develop its position as a leader in the manufacturing engineering industry.
Germany is thus uniquely positioned to tap into the potential of a new type of industrialization: Industry 4.0 [1].

2. Industry 4.0
According to the German secretariat of the “Platfom Industrie”, and its report “Recommendations for implementing the strategic initiative INDUSTRIE 4.0”, one major innovation of Industy 4.0 will be the integration of so called Cyber-Physical Production Systems (CPS), see figure 1. CPS will use real-time capable sensors, actors and cognition. Also the use of the Internet of Things is important for Industry 4.0. All this will have impacts on the value creation, business models, downstream services and work organization. Following features of Industry 4.0 will be implemented

  • Horizontal integration through value networks
  • End-to-end digital integration of engineering across the entire value chain
  • Vertical integration and networked manufacturing systems [1].

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Horizontal integration through value networks
The main question of the horizontal integration through value networks is “How can companies’ business strategies, new value networks and new business models be sustainably supported and implemented using CPS?”. In addition to “business models” and “forms of cooperation between different companies”, it becomes also necessary to address topics such as “sustainability”, “know how protection”, “standardisation strategies” and “medium to long-term training and staff development initiatives”.

End-to-end digital integration of engineering across the entire value chain
The major question for this is “How can CPS be used to deliver end-to-end business processes including the engineering workflow?” The appropriate IT systems should be deployed in order to provide “end-to-end support to the entire value chain, from product development to manufacturing system engineering, production and service”. A “holistic systems engineering approach is required to span the different technical disciplines”.

Vertical integration and networked manufacturing systems
The question to be raised for this is “How can CPS be used to create flexible and reconfigurable manufacturing systems?” In tomorrow’s smart factories, “manufacturing structures will not be fixed and predefined”. Instead, a” set of IT configuration rules will be defined to be used on a case-by-case basis to automatically build a specific structure (topology) for every situation, including all the associated requirements in terms of models, data, communication and algorithms”.
As an example, the application for the reduction of the energy consumed by a vehicle body assembly line while it is not in use will be described. Currently, many production lines, or parts thereof, continue running and consuming high quantities of energy during breaks, weekends and shifts where there is no production. Tomorrow, robots will be powered down as a matter of course, even during short breaks in production. During longer breaks in production, they will enter a kind of standby mode known as Wake-On-LAN mode. The extractors will use speed-controlled motors that can be adjusted to meet requirements instead of motors that cannot be controlled in this way [1].

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Another example application can be demonstrated by looking at custom manufacturing and how an individual customer’s requirements can be met. Today’s automotive industry is characterized by static production lines (with predefined sequences) which are hard to reconfigure to make new product variants. Software-supported Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) are normally designed with narrowly defined functionality based on the production line’s hardware, and are therefore equally static

Tomorrow vehicles become smart products that move autonomously through the assembly shop from one CPS-enabled processing module to another. The dynamic reconfiguration of production lines makes it possible to mix and match the equipment with which vehicles are fitted; furthermore, individual variations (e.g. fitting a seat from another vehicle series) can be implemented at any time in response to logistical issues (such as bottlenecks) [1].imgfile951

Read the full article here.

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