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Electronics and ICT as enabler for digital industry and optimized supply chain management covering the entire product lifecycle

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - Productive4.0 (Electronics and ICT as enabler for digital industry and optimized supply chain management covering the entire product lifecycle)

Reporting period: 2018-05-01 to 2019-04-30

Motivation and relevance for the society

Productive4.0 – a technology push: Smarter and more flexible production, a better use of resources, new standards and a changing work environment are just a few aspects associataded with Industry 4.0 also known as Digital Industry. The digital transformation will be a game changer coming with new chances and challenges. Productive4.0 is initiated to strengthen the international leadership of the European industry and to prepare it for the future. In order to link the digital with the real world, new technologies and tailor-made solutions are needed. The project will furnish the companies with fundamental tools and innovations necessary to translate the potentials of the upcoming digital revolution, into business success. This way they will also be able to prepare for the shift from physical to more qualified and flexible jobs and meet the demands of the demographic change.

Digital transformation: In general, nanoelectronics, ICT-based automation systems and service platforms will play a pivotal role. They enable connectivity, monitoring, analysing, simulating, optimising and controlling production processes. Thus, a virtual copy of the physical world is created, and Cyber Physical Systems facilitate decentralised structures. Over the Internet of Things they interact witch each other and humans in real time. All participants of the value chain will be able to utilise the newly created services. At the same time, manufacturers have to deal with the fact that the sheer production is not enough. Product lifecycle management will involve activities in advance and for the after-sales service. As to new products, development, design and a seamless integration must be taken care of. Later on, they have to be continuously maintained, updated and evolved. The range will span from the idea to recycling.

The key challenges are: Self-configurable supply chain processes and automated order-/contract handling are required; also innovative features and fail operational concepts including sensors and actuators - all the way from the IoT-component level to complete autonomous systems like robots or intelligent cars. Technologies should be able to integrate and deal with legacy systems. Industries have to deal with different cycle times at final product level as well as module and component level. Technology providers must consider standardisation issues regarding exchange processes, protocols and data. The security of infrastructures, protected communication networks and all data is critical as well as new or adapted business models. All these aspects are covered by the horizontal and the vertical integration.

New opportunities: Soon we will see new or modified business models due to changing roles and relationships between the value chain partners. New technologies have to be exploited that must ensure safety, security, reliability and operate under strict realtime constraints in a mixed-criticality setup. Electronics and ICT across the entire value chain will be the key to enhanced production efficiency. On a larger scale, they will stimulate competitiveness and open new opportunities especially for small and mid-size enterprises or start ups offering new and qualified jobs.

Overall objective

Based on the above motivation, the main objective of the Productive4.0 project proposal is to achieve significant improvement in digitalising the European industry by means of electronics and ICT. Ultimately, the project aims at suitability for everyday application across all industrial sectors. It addresses various industrial domains with the same approach, i.e. that of digitalisation. In order to achieve this ambitious objective, the main idea behind Productive4.0 is depicted in Figure 1. What makes the project unique is the holistic system approach: Productive4.0 will take a major step towards a hands-on approach of digitalising the European industry with the focus on the three pillars: Digital Production (DP), Supply Chain Networks (SCN) and Product Life Cycle Management (PLM). Covering these fields is part of the new approach for introducing seamless automation and network solutions as well as enhancing the transparency of data, their consistence and overall efficiency. The three pillars are supposed to collaborate and influence each other in a lot of ways and on a number of levels taken into account. The approach will cover all industrial domains, from automotive to robotics and inevitably push towards standardization, on which all partners involved can rely in the future.
The main objectives during the second project year were the finalization of the requirements and specification phase, the continuation of Arrowhead framework development, the development of the environment for digital industry, the hard- and software development of IoT-enabling components, the development of process virtualisation and management tools for digital production (digital supply chain twin), the continuation of monitoring and contributing to relevant standards, and - based on first evaluation results - the transfer of all the new before mentioned technologies into dedicated use cases suiting the needs of a wide range of industries. 33 project use cases are under development to cover all requirements of the three main project pillars digital production (DP), supply chain networks (SCN) and product lifecycle management (PLM) including their interplay. The project progress is fully in line with the plan. All deliverables due in the reporting period are available. Since project start we spent many efforts to maintain our highly attractive and informative webpage by frequent updates with project news, events, videos and other dissemination material (https://productive40.eu/news/). In this context we would like to emphasize that a LinkedIn group as well as a YouTube channel for the project were set up. Finally, the Productive4.0 is promoted by posts in Twitter. As described in the Technical Annex, the Productive4.0 consortium is keen to push dissemination both to the scientific community and to the general interested public. This is why in addition to the previously mentioned regular news, we emphasize the presence of Productive4.0 in publications (see Participant Portal), at conferences and in press releases, flyers etc. Productive4.0 organised the Lighthouse session Industry4.E on March 13 at the second project conference in Budapest.
Productive4.0 will lead to advances beyond the state of the art related to Digital production, Supply Chain Management and Product Lifecycle Management. By means of:
i. Reference platform framework enabling Industry 4.0 automation
ii. Robust and re-active production Big-Data analytics and optimization
iii. Hybrid Control Solutions for CPS-enabled manufacturing
iv. Smart IoT devices providing production decision support
v. Supply chain and product lifecycle management and production automation
vi. Carefully structured approach to standardization
vii. Unique holistic exploitation framework: the Productive4.0 multi-sided platform