“Strategic Alliances to Bundle Experts” was the motto of the 7th MEETING POINT AUTOMATION at the Hotel Soho in Landau. At the invitation of ProNES Automation GmbH, leading suppliers from the automation and manufacturing industry (including Beckhoff Automation GmbH, National Instruments Germany GmbH, Keyence Deutschland GmbH and Phoenix Contact Deutschland GmbH) met with system integrators (including Wolf & Wölfel GmbH, ProNES Automation GmbH) as well as an interested expert audience on the user side (including Eberspächer Controls Landau GmbH & Co. KG , SEW Eurodrive GmbH & Co. KG, WiCo Production GmbH) and representatives of universities and colleges (KIT, Hochschule Karlsruhe) to jointly take a look at current and future developments in the automation and manufacturing industry.
After the welcoming address by Jochen Weber, Managing Director of ProNES, in which he emphasised the importance of the cooperation between the attending participants and ProNES, Peter Nicolaus from National Instruments gave his presentation on the topic of real-time measurement systems in manufacturing. These are becoming more and more important as they make a significant contribution to realising timely quality assurance. In this way, it is possible to intervene in production processes at an early stage in order to increase efficiency and eliminate scrap at an early stage.
As a representative of the system integrators, Domenic Foerderer from ProNES explained the possibilities of the PIQ.measure&inspect system platform in order to effectively translate customer requirements into concrete, practice-oriented automation and manufacturing solutions.
In the third presentation of the day, Mr. Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dorschner from Karlsruhe University risked a look into the future. He presented methods of artificial intelligence and their possible contribution to automation. Artificial intelligence is about integrating neuronal structures of the human brain, which offer significant efficiency advantages over current sequential PC processing, into practical solutions. The reactions of the expert audience showed how promising neuronal structures are in combination with algorithms and self-learning systems (keyword: deep learning).
During the concluding panel discussion, Dominik Reißner, 2nd Managing Director of ProNES Automation GmbH, together with the experts on the panel and the expert audience, addressed the question of what role strategic alliances play in the modern business world. There was a unanimous credo: Companies that isolate themselves from the outside and rely solely on their own proprietary solutions will have a hard time in the future. Open source offerings are the order of the day. The trend is clearly moving away from product-centered in-house developments to customer-oriented solutions. The actual achievement of system integrators must consist of finding the solution from the bulging cornucopia of possibilities in cooperation with the customer. In this way, it is possible to precisely supplement solutions that are optimally tailored to individual customer requirements and wishes.
In times of Big Data, there is no lack of solutions, but rather the problem of making the right choice. This is exactly where strategic alliances come into play. Just to name a few examples: Hardware manufacturers cooperate with integrators to ensure optimum system integration. Ideally, research will provide the basis for new products and decision making beyond everyday project requirements on the one hand and contribute to innovative, practice-oriented solutions in cooperation with companies on the other.