The increasing demand for customizable products, especially of high value goods or throughout high-tech industry branches such as automotive, photovoltaic or consumer electronics causes a need for flexible manufacturing environments. Even more, especially in these industries, manufacturing of products is not only executed at singular premises but throughout production networks is best practice.
For this reason, customization of certain products in most cases not only concerns on production site but influence parts of the related supply chain. This makes it necessary to consider the interdependencies of sub-products or processes delivered by the suppliers and their customization options during the design of the product and setup of the production network. Manufacturers have to closely cooperate in this network in order to exchange information about product specifications and to jointly plan delivery dates and other logistic details. Obviously, this causes efforts on each production network participant’s side and also may delay feedback towards end-customers.
In order to overcome these issues, the ManuCloud project followed the cloud manufacturing approach, i.e. it transferred service concepts from the computing domain (e.g. software-as-a-service) to the manufacturing domain (manufacturing-as-a-service) in order to (semi-)automate the integration of production networks on IT level.
In detail this means, that in addition to the exchange of business level information which is already well-established in industry, the developed web platform serves as an integration tool for product specifications and manufacturing IT systems on production network level. This could be achieved by describing products or process capabilities by means of manufacturing service descriptions which are generated from factory internal IT systems like MES (Manufacturing Execution System) in a semi-automated way. This generation of manufacturing service descriptions can take place consistently throughout all factory internal IT layers – starting with the description of equipment capabilities which are step by step aggregated and mapped to the services a factory provides.
Those service descriptions also include configuration options for the customization process of each (sub-)product or process provided by them and can be composed by means of a tree structure to end-products, i.e. the related supply chains.
Based on those end-product descriptions which are based on the underlying service descriptions and use their configuration options, user-specific adaption of products to the specific wishes is provided via a product configurator. This configurator automatically adapts to the respective product characteristics and configuration options provided and herewith represents a general tool to be reused for all products provided via the platform.
After configuring and ordering a product, MES-level control functionalities are provided throughout the production network, i.e. tracking of production status and measurement results, or even the optimization of configuration settings according to previous process results.
The ManuCloud consortium: The ManuCloud consortium was composed of eight partners from four different EU member states (Austria, Germany, Hungary, United Kingdom). The partners were the following: advanced clean production Information Technology GmbH (acp-IT), Robert Bosch GmbH, Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation (IPA, consortium leader), Fraunhofer Research Institution for Organics, Materials and Electronic Devices COMEDD, HELIATEK GmbH, Tridonic Dresden GmbH & Co. KG (formerly LEDON OLED Lighting GmbH & Co. KG), nxtControl GmbH, Computer and Automation Research Institute of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, and the University of Strathclyde.
Thanks to all partners!
The research leading to this result has received funding from the European Union’s 7th Framework Programme (grant agreement no. 260142).
Jörg Walz | Fraunhofer-Institut
New software speeds origami structure designs
12.10.2017 | Georgia Institute of Technology
Seeing the next dimension of computer chips
11.10.2017 | Osaka University
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
19.10.2017 | Life Sciences
19.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research
19.10.2017 | Earth Sciences