As mentioned in the previous installment, I decided to join one of Hannover Messe’s guided tours to see some companies I might not normally stop to visit. The first tour, Industrial Automation and IT, took me to seven companies in a little less than two hours. What follows is a summary of that experience.
Hauwei Technologies was the first stop. The company demonstrated its time sensitive network (TSN) switch with an Industry 4.0 use case in the multi-vendor environment. TSN is a new standard which enables real-time and deterministic communication over Ethernet. It addresses latency transmission and availability. In combination with OPC UA, Hauwei says it is the first and only candidate for the establishing a holistic communication infrastructure from the sensor to the cloud.
These autonomous driving robots and arms to move packages are example of how factories can run with the right technology. In addition, software is available that works with robots, but also offers AI to make sure warehouse logistics are as efficient as possible.
Next up, WSCAD GmgH presented smart electrical CAD solutions for electrical engineering. With more than 1.2 million symbols and parts data from 200 manufacturers, WSCADuniverse.com claims to be the largest electrical CAD data Library. The software is designed to create a digital twin with all the component information and documentation. This data works with the WSCAD augmented reality app. Service and maintenance staff can wave a smartphone or tablet over the components to immediately access the corresponding plan and product data of components.
CAD programs such as this are increasingly important as the IoT grows, allowing streamlined communication. Team large libraries of databases, with digital twins, and augmented reality for the boots on the ground and programs like this can save enough time and money that it will be difficult to compete without adopting to advanced technologies.
In-tact talked about SmartConnect—individual digitization solutions for production processes. The company’s goal is to make production smarter with modular systems. The company demonstrated how it implements individual digitization solutions in a wide variety of production environments. Some examples included applications in the areas of quality optimization, KPI monitoring, data visualization, operator support, and machine monitoring.
Offering a two-week trial, InTech believes its platform to communicate connected devices from the machine to everywhere is so valuable clients will not want to give it back. In short, this technology offers an easy to use platform that displays on everything including tablets, smart phones, and smart watches.
In the past, many companies used closed proprietary platforms to maintain IP and control. However, today’s open control platforms offer new opportunities for automation. With such complex production lines that may have multiple company’s components, not offering an open option could force a client to us a different product.
Phoenix Contact is a large company that offers many hardware and software solutions. Many of its products focus on making sure everything is user friendly, and open. This flexibility is imperative to success in the current industrial field.
Phoenix Contact is aware of this and presented the combination of an open control platform, a system systemic Cloud integration, and modern components to provide new possibilities. Openness and flexibility are important in today’s industry. Phoenix Contact offers adaptation to changing demands and efficient use of software services.
ODVA says Ethernet/IP is the leading global established industrial Ethernet solution for applications and factoring process automation. The open standard allows vendor-independent configuration and transparent data exchange. The possibilities for easy and flexible communication between different applications within a multi-vendor network were demonstrated at the ODVA booth.
The IoT can be a double-edged sword. The easier things are to access, the easier it could be for outsiders to access it, too. ODVA walked through a demonstration showing how CIP can keep things safe in the IoT.
It was nice to see a familiar name and visit Rittal’s massive 2,300 m2 exhibition space. As usual, this year didn’t disappoint. After five years of development work, Rittal unveiled its new large enclosure system for the very first time. Further highlights include the new base/plinth system, the support Arm System CP with new highlight height-adjustable support section, and smart solution for cooling enclosures, as well as the new secure Edge Data Center.
If you look closely you can see a black square on all the components that make up this large enclosure. This is a QR code that can be scanned to bring up all the information needed for maintenance, installation, or whatever a client might need.
Young Tech Enterprises
Unfortunately, I had to leave the tour for a meeting and missed this presentation. However, technology-oriented industrial startups have always been an important part of Hanover Messe, and Young Tech Enterprises offers networking opportunities and assistance for industrial startups, spin-offs, and young entrepreneurs. Young companies operating at the high-tech end of the industrial technology sector tend to be drivers of innovation. They’re important catalysts for growth and innovation for classic industrial companies.