Fraunhofer IPK

Institut für Produktionsanlagen und Konstruktionstechnik

Digital Transformation - Englische Ausgabe 2017

Smart Technologies

in the Industrie 4.0 Lab

The Industrie 4.0 Laboratory at Fraunhofer IPK is one of four transfer centers of the Berlin Center for Digital Transformation. With its research and innovation offers aimed at digitalization in industry and in particular with its concept of a digitally integrated production, the I4.0 Lab fully supports the industry along the value-added chain of industrial production – from virtual product development, production planning and control, the production equipment and technologies for parts manufacturing all the way to the comprehensive automation and networking of all company processes.

Robot programming and path manipulation using Augmented Reality.
(© IWF TU Berlin/Jens Lamprecht)

In the Industrie 4.0 Laboratory, scientists of Fraunhofer IPK develop their visions and scenarios for business cases, work on and test key technologies, and provide services and tools for digital transformation. To test prototypes and to apply and optimize realized systems in a production-related environment they draw upon an excellent infrastructure consisting of production machinery, robot systems, IoT and cloud platforms. Plug-and-play IT environments can also integrate and qualify virtual development tools and intuitive interaction in virtual reality environments.

Your Path to Industrie 4.0

The Industrie 4.0 Lab offers newcomers to the topic comprehensive assistance with its »Start DIP« program:

  • With its information and qualification offers, it gets companies ready for digital transformation.
  • Status quo and demand analysis: Together with companies, the I4.0 Lab will assess how well they are prepared for Industrie 4.0, what their digitally integrated production scenarios would look like and what would be a practical approach for further implementations.
  • Hands-on prototypes are developed in a short time – to help with skill development and to integrate and raise awareness among employees.
  • Implementation Support: The I4.0 Lab works out implementation strategies and supports the stepwise introduction of processes and IT systems.
  • Learning factories will train employees for their work in an intelligently networked production.

Industrie 4.0 Kit – Quick Realization of Prototypes 

One of the current projects in the Industrie 4.0 Laboratory is the Industrie 4.0 Kit. This kit allows small and medium-sized manufacturers to trace their specific value creation process with high efficiency. For these companies, investment costs as well as the time to plan and implement solutions for the control of manufacturing processes are being reduced. The system also provides order-specific parameters on the individual parts level. The Industrie 4.0 Kit helps small and medium-sized companies to quickly implement prototypes for the networking of machines and equipment in order to process and trace individual orders. 

Digital Factory Twin

The objective of this project is to build a test bed for digital factory twins. This test bed will serve as a virtual interaction platform for controlling and securing manufacturing processes. Visualization and interaction will be based on a mobile virtual reality system in combination with a human-machine interaction device. The system will continuously feed data and information to the digital twin so that the digital twin reflects the real actual state. The digital twin enhances the transparency of processes, and it is an indispensable tool for the development of cyber-physical systems. The test bed will allow the implementation of practice-relevant applications for the virtual launch of systems or for re-engineering.

Digital Assistance in a Smart Production Environment

The rising demand for product variations requires increasing flexibility and shorter response times in production. This requires shorter and less complex installations and optimizations. Digitalization and Industrie 4.0 provide new possibilities for cooperation between people and machines for increased efficiency of working with equipment. The integration of innovative technologies from different areas such as the projection of equipment and process information into the real manufacturing environment in the respective work situation, the use of digital assistance systems and gesture-based commands create comprehensive assistance while working with production systems.

Control and monitoring of flexible process networks for the manufacturing of customized products using the Industry Cockpit.

BMBF Program »I4KMU«

With its Industrie 4.0 Laboratory, Fraunhofer IPK is one of the officially certified Industrie 4.0 national test environments in Germany. With grants for »Industrie 4.0 Test Environments – Mobilization of Small and Medium-sized Companies for Industrie 4.0«, also known as »I4KMU«, the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) supports digital transformation in this sector. In this program, the BMBF provides small and medium-sized companies access to a nationwide network of I4.0 test environments, enabling companies to test digitized processes and products as well as innovative system approaches. With this assistance, companies can test comprehensive networked business models under realistic conditions. Small and medium-sized companies are invited to apply for grants to cover part of the costs, which help finance their  individual I4.0 projects in a I4.0 test environment. For further information see:

Your contact

Eckhard Hohwieler

Phone: +49 30 39006-121


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