Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Using digital twins for knowledge transfer


Gathering with customers and colleagues at meetings, events, workshops and seminars and collaborating with them in person has always been important – but it is not an option for the foreseeable future. The coronavirus pandemic is forcing us to find new ways of working together. The Fraunhofer IAO and the Fraunhofer IPA have already developed solutions to enable remote communication in tomorrow‘s work scenarios. Cooperation with their partners from industry and research is shifting to the digital Future Work Lab run by the two Stuttgart-based institutes – a solution that crosses boundaries and borders. This new form of connectivity is made possible by digital twins and virtual lab tours.

The concept of a digital twin is widely accepted in modern manufacturing and represents a key component of Industrie 4.0. It provides a digital model of the entire production process and a means of intervening directly in production at any time.

Future Work Lab: augmented and virtual reality applications enable cost-effective planning and a faster way to adapt production systems in the event of disruptions on the shop floor.

© Fraunhofer IAO/Ludmilla Parsyak

Put simply, a digital twin is a digital representation of a real object in the digital world. Researchers at Fraunhofer IAO and Fraunhofer IPA are now taking this concept even further by applying it to the field of knowledge transfer. Anyone interested in the latest research and innovative solutions offered by Fraunhofer IAO and Fraunhofer IPA can find information they need and check out innovative new methods on site.

Now, scientists working on the “FutureWork360” project are creating digital twins of their lab environments using a laser scanner. By bringing these labs into the digital realm, they can make them available online. Visualization of these digital twins is handled by the technology partner Hemminger Ingenieurgesellschaft mbH.

Virtual access to research and innovation

“The 360-degree scanner captures our laboratories and makes them available online so that people can access them from anywhere and at any time”, says IAO researcher and project manager Yeama Bangali. Visitors to the website can take virtual tours of the labs and explore them at their own pace to get an initial idea of what they offer.

The choice of tours currently includes additive manufacturing, assistance systems, digital planning and connected manufacturing systems. Bangali and her team have been offering guided tours since the end of March, and visitors can also attend live Q&A sessions in online meeting rooms.

The scientists’ research is presented through texts, videos and images. Examples include the use of virtual reality to help people experience different forms of human-machine-collaboration. “If a company expresses interest in a specific use case, then we invite them to an online session.

The response to this digital form of interaction in virtual labs has been very positive – we observed that particularly clearly in the webinars we had organized with members of Plastipolis, an industry and research cluster that promotes the French plastics industry,” says Bangali.

New working models enabling new and climate-friendly ways of working

The aim of the FutureWork360 project, which is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), is to explore what virtual forms of collaboration might look like in the future.

“Our approach offers excellent potential in times of crisis and beyond. It’s easy to run an Open Lab Day online using our digital platform. We also offer an efficient and climate-friendly working model for international collaboration. Eliminating travel costs is easy if nobody has to fly,” says Bangali. The researcher and her colleagues are currently working on new tools for collaboration and optimizing the digital twin of the Future Work Lab.

Weitere Informationen:

Joerg-Dieter Walz | Fraunhofer Research News

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Research alliance: TRUMPF and Fraunhofer IPA ramping up artificial intelligence for industrial use
06.08.2020 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Produktionstechnik und Automatisierung IPA

nachricht Novel approach improves graphene-based supercapacitors
03.08.2020 | University of Technology Sydney

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: ScanCut project completed: laser cutting enables more intricate plug connector designs

Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT have come up with a striking new addition to contact stamping technologies in the ERDF research project ScanCut. In collaboration with industry partners from North Rhine-Westphalia, the Aachen-based team of researchers developed a hybrid manufacturing process for the laser cutting of thin-walled metal strips. This new process makes it possible to fabricate even the tiniest details of contact parts in an eco-friendly, high-precision and efficient manner.

Plug connectors are tiny and, at first glance, unremarkable – yet modern vehicles would be unable to function without them. Several thousand plug connectors...

Im Focus: New Strategy Against Osteoporosis

An international research team has found a new approach that may be able to reduce bone loss in osteoporosis and maintain bone health.

Osteoporosis is the most common age-related bone disease which affects hundreds of millions of individuals worldwide. It is estimated that one in three women...

Im Focus: AI & single-cell genomics

New software predicts cell fate

Traditional single-cell sequencing methods help to reveal insights about cellular differences and functions - but they do this with static snapshots only...

Im Focus: TU Graz Researchers synthesize nanoparticles tailored for special applications

“Core-shell” clusters pave the way for new efficient nanomaterials that make catalysts, magnetic and laser sensors or measuring devices for detecting electromagnetic radiation more efficient.

Whether in innovative high-tech materials, more powerful computer chips, pharmaceuticals or in the field of renewable energies, nanoparticles – smallest...

Im Focus: Tailored light inspired by nature

An international research team with Prof. Cornelia Denz from the Institute of Applied Physics at the University of Münster develop for the first time light fields using caustics that do not change during propagation. With the new method, the physicists cleverly exploit light structures that can be seen in rainbows or when light is transmitted through drinking glasses.

Modern applications as high resolution microsopy or micro- or nanoscale material processing require customized laser beams that do not change during...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

“Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2020”: The final touches for surfaces

23.07.2020 | Event News

Conference radar for cybersecurity

21.07.2020 | Event News

Contact Tracing Apps against COVID-19: German National Academy Leopoldina hosts international virtual panel discussion

07.07.2020 | Event News

Latest News

Rare Earth Elements in Norwegian Fjords?

06.08.2020 | Earth Sciences

Anode material for safe batteries with a long cycle life

06.08.2020 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Turning carbon dioxide into liquid fuel

06.08.2020 | Life Sciences

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>