The four year project envisions a ‘Digital and Smart Factory’ architecture and implementation. This has the potential to achieve significant benefits in earlier visibility of manufacturing issues, faster production ramp-up time, faster time to volume production and subsequently shorter time to market, reduced manufacturing costs and improved product quality, as well as sustainability objectives like low energy consumption and waste reduction.

These benefits will be achieved by meeting the five objectives which make up the foundation of the ‘Factory of the Future’: -

  • End-to-end digitisation of the product, process and machine resources. This advanced information will enable the development of three horizontal application pillars.

  • Development of a ‘Smart Machine Controller’ (SMC) concept, including an extended ‘Supervisory Control and Acquisition Data System’ for monitoring the process performance and the energy efficiency.

  • Realisation of a ‘Smart Manufacturing Optimiser’ (SMO) using the virtual product information from CAD/PLM and the real machine and on-line process information to adapt process control information to achieve optimal process results.

  • Extension of MES systems to a ‘Smart Manufacturing Execution System’ (SMES) by supporting resource efficiency and sustainability goals and communication.

The three application pillars will deliver the manufacturing performance indicators into a common compilation dashboard which allows the integrated monitoring of ‘production-to-enterprise asset and overall sustainability management.

In summary, the project will extend existing information processing systems by enriching information about product data, machine tools, tools and processes and process monitoring information fed back to the overall manufacturing information systems.

The project will deliver: -

  • A proof of the ‘Smart Factory’ concept based on an open-architecture foundation allowing the demonstration for selected user case study scenarios providing an instantiation of the generic and standards-oriented framework

  • A technology exploitation model supported by a living lab infrastructure covering the complete product-manufacturing lifecycle