Festo Productivity Master demonstration

Design Insights: Looking Ahead to Hannover Messe

March 17, 2021
A review of the day’s top trends and news from Machine Design editors.

Another Digital Hannover Messe

When it comes to industrial trade shows, there simply is nothing that compares to Hannover Messe. The annual springtime event in Germany is mostly about experiences of sights and sounds and smells—particularly from the open-air bratwurst stands that dot the grounds. It also is the place to debut new technology and to showcase where design and manufacturing innovation is headed.

For the second straight year, however, that innovation can only be shared digitally. The event assembled by the Hannover Messe team is featuring sessions on topics ranging from digital transformation to intelligent production to a global look at manufacturing. The 2021 event will take place April 12-16 and has all of the typical trappings of Hannover Messe—networking innovation and a focus on women in manufacturing. All that will be missing is the great food.

A Focus on Digital Customization

One of the highlights of the annual pre-event press tour at Hannover Messe is a trip to the Festo booth, which usually has something jumping, flying or swimming. With the digital Hannover Messe all that is available, Festo will settle for a demonstration on how automation and digitization can work together. The Productivity Master demonstration will illustrate this by showing how USB flash drives can be customized both in design and in content.

“While the Productivity Master features a mix of pneumatic and electric automation, from flow sensors to servo drives, from pneumatic slide units to electric Cartesian robots, it is the way these products are connected that enables true digitalization,” said Nigel Dawson, head of business development, Electric Automation at Festo.

A View from the Top

Another Hannover Messe session that is always both entertaining and informative is the press conference from Hans Beckhoff, the managing director for the company that bears his family name. The Beckhoff presentation this year will focus on international business development and product innovations, two areas of great interest beyond the press corps. Machine Design will have a review of the press event on April 13. It starts at 7 a.m. Central time, but it is one event worth getting up early for.

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