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HANNOVER MESSE 2018, 23 - 27 April
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Industrie 4.0

A Quick Look at the Automation Technology Highlights

Companies regularly launch world firsts and innovative concepts at HANNOVER MESSE. Here is a selection of promising solutions from the automation sector in 2016.

23 Apr. 2016
Hannover Messe, Automation Technology Highlights

To stay competitive in the process industry, companies must innovate constantly. At the same time, they are under pressure to reduce costs and meet stricter environmental requirements. This is a difficult balancing act that calls for new solutions and concepts. The Industrial Automation area in HANNOVER MESSE unites them in one venue.

For example, the " advintec " laser measurement solution by Leoni GmbH aus Hannover (Hall 17, Stand E42). The system removes and measures components in automotive production workflows. Using a high-precision laser, advintec detects the position of components or grippers, and automatically corrects the corresponding robot program. This avoids collisions and keeps conveyor belt production running without interruptions. The solution is easy to integrate and is also less expensive than conventional mechanical systems.

Innovative personnel protection

In a similar vein, but with a different application, there is the acoustic localation system by the Linz Center of Mechatronics GmbH (Hall 2, Stand A44). The system tracks employees working near mining machinery, construction sites or industrial plants and stops them if they are in danger. The challenge is that, in the past, the environmental conditions in mines and in machine halls frequently interfered with previous electromagnetic location systems. That is why the LCM solution uses sound propagation as an additional physical principle. Specially coded acoustic signals ensure that measurements even work in loud industrial environments.

Airborne assistant

The indoor flying object by Festo (Halle 15, Stand D07) is significantly more delicate, and can maneuver autonomously in all directions, pick up objects independently and place them in the desired position. It consists of an ultralight carbon ring with eight adaptive propellers, with a rotating helium sphere containing an integrated gripper element in the center. As a result, humans and the sphere can interact safely and smoothly at any time.

That means it can be used as an airborne assistant, for example when working overhead, at great heights or as a supply system in spaces that are difficult to access. However, potential users will have to wait a while before they can buy one: Market launch is scheduled for 2020, but there will be prototype on display at HANNOVER MESSE.

Low-cost solution for mass production

Instead of its own products, the Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques (Hall 7, Stand D34) focuses on other manufacturers: The innovative " T&T-Fingerprint " is a low-cost method for clearly identifying industrially manufactured components based on their individual surface properties. That allows them to be traced back to the respective production line.

Product markers like RFID labels or data matrix codes are too costly for low-cost components and can be technically impossible to use with smaller items. The Fraunhofer Institute’s solution avoids volume-dependent costs. As a result, the method is suitable even for low-priced mass products like plugs, sleeves or metallic components. The system can be integrated in manufacturing processes, allowing counterfeit products to be detected and batches to be attributed quickly and cost-effectively.

The leading trade fair Industrial Automation at HANNOVER MESSE will showcase over 7,000 innovative products, including 300 trade fair "firsts". The Visitor Guide gives you an overview of all exhibitors, events and news.

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