Servizio Comunitario di Informazione in materia di Ricerca e Sviluppo - CORDIS

Periodic Report Summary 1 - AUTOUNIMO (Automotive Production Engineering Unified Perspective based on Data Mining Methods and Virtual Factory Model)

1.1 Overview of general project objectives
AutoUniMo is an Industry-Academia Partnerships and Pathways project carried out under FP7 Marie Curie Actions. AutoUniMo joins two academia and two industrial partners that conduct researches in the area of automotive engineering and applied informatics. The main goal of the project is to share academic knowledge and industrial expertise to fulfil knowledge gaps in automotive production support area. AutoUniMo’s academic partners help industrial partners to apply new engineering and informatics approaches and to verify their usefulness in automotive industry. All project partners are convinced that proper identification of patterns and data structures available in production systems will make possible the more efficient ways for converting raw materials into final products and will support more competitive production.
Industrial partner Continetal is recognized by drivers as a tire manufacturer, but few people know that it is also an important producer of automotive electronics. CONTI is specialised in design of advanced sensing and control devices for automobiles. CONTI is in the position of worldwide competence centre in the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems(ADAS). CONTI cannot get a sustainable position on the automotive market without the new informatics tools that support the short series production.
Industrial partner AIUT is a SME company that provides services and technical solutions in the field of automation, process control and production management for various kinds of industries. AIUT has vast design and execution of electrical projects, automation control and process control engineering. AIUT is known for twenty five years as a supplier of automated production stations used by the automotive industry. AIUT cannot operate in a highly competitive environment without advanced engineering solutions which not only fulfil functional requirements of the customers, but also support cost effective and energy efficient production.
Technische Hochschule Ingolstadt (THI) has great experiences in the automotive industry. THI is leading a numerous of research projects, that are focused on automotive industry. THI conducts research on component-based methods for digital engineering that are focused on definition of virtual components, which are abstractly described by their functionalities provided to production process.
Institute of Informatics, Silesian University of Technology (SUT) conducts research activity on data mining, artificial intelligence, computer networks and industrial communication systems. SUT conducts researches on applying data mining and artificial intelligence to support energy efficient production systems and researches on the application of dynamic Multi-Agent model for Manufacturing Execution Systems.
The main research goal of the AutoUniMo project is a fusion between emerging research areas in engineering like Component Based Automation, Digital Factories and advanced IT methods like Data Mining, Artificial Intelligence and Multi-Agent Systems used for automotive production support. Practical goals are concerned on the MES applied for short series production, energy efficient control for automotive production, ADAS and common data engineering model.

1.2 Work performed since the beginning of the project and the main results achieved so far
CONTI leads the research on the “Manufacturing Execution System for Short Series Production Support”. An information model that reflects requirements of agile manufacturing has been developed under the WP1. The strategic research target is "one piece flow production" that means the feasibility of short series production (up to one element) by using the production lines designed formerly for mass manufacturing. The application of the new standards and IT technologies like: ISA95 models for Manufacturing Execution Systems, object-oriented communication interfaces between MES and control systems, service-based architecture for industrial communication including OPC UA interface, service based communication between MES and ERP Systems including OData communication, new database architectures, Holonic manufacturing and multi-agent systems were tested and verified on the practical use cases. The research work results are presented in D1.1 report titled “MES for Short Series Production - Functional Requirements and Selection of Best Available IT Technologies”. CONTI has started a new MES Framework prototype called EMBA 2.0 that replaces existing MES software used by CONTI’s Prototyping Department. EMBA2.0 first fulfils the requirements of Prototyping Department and second is the practical base for the next research activities planned under the AutoUniMo project.
AIUT leads the research on the “Energy Efficient Production Systems for Automotive Industry”. WP2 is focussed on the energy efficiency on a machine and production station level. AIUT has performed a deep data studies over data logs collected in real production systems used by automotive industry. The two-factor model of average energy consumption that take into account the production profile has been shipped and verified. The proposed methodology is based on the observations of energy consumption and actuators behaviour. It allows for fast detection of abnormal energy consumption by machines (technical problems) or production procedures (human activity as source of energy waste). The experimental stand DC40 was shipped for purpose of laboratory controlled experiments. The basis for an autonomous program block called “green control processor” has been prepared. New software for energy efficiency control on the PLC level has been prepared. The first achieved functionalities are: the “trusty” alarming on the energy efficiency issues and the stand-by strategy as a part of station production cycle.
SUT leads the research on the “Artificial Intelligence in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems”. The main goal of WP3 is a fusion between artificial intelligence and data mining applied in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). WP3 has been started from the case studies on the existing solutions available for ADAS. The research work results are presented in D.3.1 report titled “Strategies for Artificial Intelligence in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems”. The preparation of research environment for the application of artificial intelligence for ADAS support has been started. The first version of mobile platform based on RasberryPI board has been prepared and tested. The communication between radars, lidars, cameras and control system is ensured by CAN network. The research on the application of artificial intelligence for mobile platform control includes the work on neural network implemented in FPGA.
THI leads the research on the “Digital factory model for automotive production”. The main goal of WP4 is to define common data exchange model that will simplify access and version control during production system design and development. Every branch of engineering gets a data needed for further work, it means the common part and part used only by the branch. Data modifications are important for all cooperating engineers to work on newest version of base data. The main goal is data consistency all the project time by every branch without meetings, explanations, support etc. THI proposed main assumptions for such data model that is based on a universal technology of the the AutomationML (AML) language. AML is based on XML files and has proper mechanisms to mark interfaces, mutual relations, special features of any element as well as 3D models and SPS programs. It is also easy to extend it on new areas of application. This model is under testing on the example of AIUT’s DC40 laboratory stand.

1.3 The expected final results and their potential impact and use
AutoUniMo project gives strong support to the research carriers of ten researchers (ERs and ESRs) directly involved in the secondments mechanism. Moreover, tens of partners’ staff members including industrial research staff, PhD and master students are involved in activities carried out under AutoUniniMo project. Partners strongly believe that new experiences and new skills obtained by research teams’ members are crucial for their future career development. AutoUniMo will also give direct support to project partners. CONTI will benefit from WP1 outputs D1.2 and D1.3 by new software prototype for the Manufacturing Execution System dedicated for short series production. It will improve production scheduling, product genealogy tracing, production quality management and maintenance management, will support new product development performed by CONTI’s Prototyping Department. AIUT will benefit from new components and tools dedicated for energy efficient control production systems expected as D2.2. It will help AIUT to extend an rich its offer dedicated to automotive industry. SUT will benefit from new research environment for artificial intelligence in advanced driver assistance systems support expected as D3.2 by that will be used both in future researches and education activity as well. THI will benefit from new software framework for digital factory expected as D4.2. It will extend scientific research tools used by THI and will improve attractiveness of the high education process. AutoUniMo project will also contribute to the European Research Area. Wide dissemination activities include two international seminars and two conferences. AutoUniMo project partners are very open for a new research cooperation with both industrial and academic institutions. The up to date information about project progress is available at AutoUniMo website:

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