Electric mobility is currently at the centre of public awareness. At the same time, from a technological point of view, it is also worth taking a look at the production landscapes, which have to be adapted at great expense.
It makes sense for car manufacturers to use existing process and production landscapes, so-called brownfields, for cost reasons. This means that, in the best-case scenario, hybrid, petrol and diesel models come off the production line at the same time as e-cars, resulting in a further increase in the complexity of the production and logistics processes involved. The significantly increased variety of models, combined with the expectation of just-in-time provision of all the modules and components, implies considerable demands on integration into available production systems and, in particular, the associated IT system landscape.
Smart “plug & produce” despite variety?
The interlinking of plants, machines and people in production and logistics is the cornerstone for the successful integration of production systems into the “Smart Factory”. This is based on standardisation and homogenisation in the IT landscape. Platform-independent and harmonised interfaces with regard to semantics, protocols and connectors are essential to achieve this. This is the only way the “Smart-Factory” can guarantee a fast setup of modules, based on the the plug-and-produce concept. Distributed intelligence is a key element in this context.
Production modules know their technical abilities and, in the bestcase scenario, act autonomously on the changing requirements of the ecosystem concerned. What looks trivial on paper, in practice requires a considerably sharper focus on digital transformation in production and logistics.
This is the only way that we, as developers, can also successfully ensure the requirements for the production of electric cars on a brownfield site.
We compile our customers’ requirements for their individual Smart Factory and integrate new vehicle models into existing production systems intelligently. Christopher Reuß, Head of Smart Factory, will be happy to answer any questions you may have via e-mail or telephone (+49 661 6000 75212).