Metering and mixing technology in digital production
Smart Production Network tests application scenarios of the future
Digitisation, smart production and Industry 4.0 are the subject of much discussion at present. But what exactly is smart production and how is metering and mixing technology involved in this? DOPAG discussed these and other related questions together with around 50 members of Smart Production Network. The network was established in 2016 at the initiative of the Mannheim business development group and is the only publicly driven platform for the digitisation of production in Germany.
To test specific application scenarios, the network established a Smart Factory Demonstrator. This is a core component of the network and demonstrates how smart production works. The entire value chain is presented at five stations, starting with the creation of an individual customer order in batch size 1, taking in the partially automated and digitally supported production, through to packaging and dispatch of products ready for sale.
The product created in the Smart Factory Demonstrator is a sensor cube which can be configured individually through a web shop. A special aspect of this is the integration of a collaborative robot which joins the housing components of the sensor cube and bonds them together using adhesive technology. DOPAG has provided a two-component metering and mixing system for this application and has integrated it into the production process.
A shopfloor visualisation as well as accompanying conditions such as warehouse stocks are managed through a tablet. The entire process is programmed virtually and all production steps not included directly in the Smart Factory Demonstrator, such as packaging and dispatch, are visualised virtually on a large screen.
The configurable product, the sensor cube, determines values in the ambient air through its integrated physical sensor boards, such as CO2 content, temperature, ambient pressure, etc. This sensor can be configured and ordered online. In its subsequent location, it tries to establish network access via Wi-Fi, loads the software of its ‘digital twin’ created via the web shop and can then be used by the owner.
As well as providing the dispensing system, DOPAG also provides expert advice on metering and mixing technology. The network also offers a great opportunity to discuss the subject of smart production with other businesses and share key impressions and feedback.
Smart Production Network is made up of start-ups, small and medium-sized companies, global players and scientific institutions from IT and production. The goal is to promote digitisation in the Rhine-Neckar metropolitan region through a strong, effective innovation cluster.