Digitization and networking of devices, systems, products and services are progressing faster and faster. Anyone who wants to benefit from this change has to influence it actively. Integration is the watchword. In this context, Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) will take on a whole new level of significance. It supports innovative system and smart engineering approaches, helps accelerate development with integrated requirements management and is ideally seamlessly integrated with ERP software and production management. In other words, it is the heart of future "cyber-physical systems," the self-learning environment that tracks, evaluates and ideally combines the physical and real world on this basis.
Networked production, with workpieces and production resources that can communicate with one another, allows companies to manufacture custom products using mass production methods. To make this a reality, companies need special information architectures. Production IT needs to be integrated in the overall corporate IT architecture , both vertically, i.e. between the corporate management level and the production level, and horizontally, i.e. between the supplier, processor, logistics and customer.
"Product Lifecycle Management alone is not enough in the Industry 4.0 age,"
He believes business processes have to be mapped globally.
"This includes new communication tools or applications to evaluate the floods of data."
It is essential that comprehensive software involves end customers in the development phase. "This is more important than ever as products become increasingly individualized," explains Barth.
Siemens (Hall 6, Stand K18) is also taking this approach with the "Digital Enterprise Platform." Planning and design, "virtual" components of manufacturing, are becoming inseparable from the "real" elements implementation and engineering. One of the group’s presentations reports that "integrating product and production lifecycles accelerates development to market readiness by up to 50 percent."
The sendler\circle, a consortium of software and service providers in the PLM sector, even goes so far as to call product data management a "basic requirement enabling modern, intelligent and networked products to perform their functions and be successful on the global market." There would be no Industry 4.0 without systems like this.
Preparing for the future in good time
Over one hundred sample applications for Industry 4.0 will be on display at HANNOVER MESSE, with Product Lifecycle Management playing a key role in many of them. Look forward to interesting presentations, practical demonstrations and plenty of networking opportunities – at Digital Factory, one of the most important leading trade fairs at HANNOVER MESSE. Whether CAE, MES or PLM – every exhibit at the leading international trade fair for industrial software solutions turbo-charges innovation. Nothing less than networking all industrial processes digitally is at stake – from concepts and production to delivery. See the latest technologies and meet key experts: Industrial Automation, a leading trade fair at HANNOVER MESSE, paves the way to a customized Industry 4.0.