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A key feature of Industry 4.0 is automated collaboration between different production processes. In the same way that different trades work together (or at least should) on construction sites, machines performing different tasks can be coordinated to form a seamless production chain. Dr. BOY GmbH has linked up with its technology partners Universal Robots A/S and Müller Maschinentechnik for HANNOVER MESSE 2017 to demonstrate how this works in reality.

To start with, a BOY 35E VV injection molding machine produces transparent plastic cups from the SMMA copolymer NAS. Next, a UR lightweight robot on the free machine table of the Boy insert-molding machine takes the cup from the mold and feeds it into a labeling station from Bluhm Systeme GmbH. The labeling station sticks a label designed by visitors onto the cup. And then, as has proven so popular in the past, visitors can decide whether they would like an empty cup – or one filled with freshly tapped beer. If they opt for the beer, another UR robot takes the cup from the first robot’s gripper, holds it under the tap and then hands the beer to the "customer". After sampling the beer, visitors can check the production data for their cup at their convenience, simply by scanning the printed QR code. Bottoms up!