Last Consortium meeting at DDE
The 5. consortium meeting took place from May 18th to May 21st, 2015 at Dresden Elektronik Ingenieurtechnik GmbH (DDE). It was the final Face-To-Face meeting of project partners and the European Commission before the scheduled end of the project. Main agenda items were the second Exploitation Seminar as well as the final General Assembly to validate the current project's state and take a look at the prospects for the future.
Manufacturing Performance Days
Visual Components participated in the Manufacturing Performance Days at Tampere, Finland from June 8th to 10th, 2015. The MPD’s attendants were able to discover SkillPro developments in the info point situated at Visual Components’ booth as well as in the parallel events celebrated during the seminar.
SkillPro is a research project funded by the Framework Program 7 of the European Commission. The objective of SkillPro is to bring the vision of smart reconfigurable manufacturing systems into application. It considers a modern production system as a combination and collaboration of cyber-physical assets that offer different skills. SkillPro provides an extension of the Plug-and-Produce paradigm using knowledge about the skills of the diverse automation system components and about their composition and cooperation and is based on the open standard of AutomationML.
It is increasingly evident that the era of mass production is being replaced by the era of market niches. The key to creating products that can meet the demands of a diversified customer base is a short development cycle yielding low cost, high quality goods in sufficient quantity to meet demand. This makes flexibility an increasingly important attribute to manufacturing. In response the reconfigurable manufacturing system (RMS) concept has emerged in the last few years as an attempt to achieve the required manufacturing flexibility.
A RMS proposes a manufacturing system where machine components, machines, cells, or material handling units can be added, removed, modified, or interchanged as needed to respond quickly to changing requirements. Compared to flexible manufacturing systems (FMS), this approach is believed to have the potential to offer a cheaper solution, in the long run as it can increase the life and utility of a manufacturing system.
A lot of research has been conducted towards establishing such a production system, the most prominent of those approaches being the "Plug&Produce" paradigm - in analogy to the "Plug&Play" paradigm of the Computer Industry. 'Plug-and-Produce' allows the automatic configuration and seamless integration of heterogeneous devices into a system. However, while the "Plug&Produce" paradigm has contributed greatly towards reducing commissioning effort and ramp-up time for new components, it has been too focussed on solving interoperability issues by means of standardized interfaces and
service or agent-oriented ICT-architectures. Enhancing these approaches by taking into account the knowledge about the capabilities/skills of the new devices and their impact on the overall capabilities/skills of the production system in terms of operational procedures and economical KPI would increase the versatility and efficiency of production sites.
The project SkillPro (Grant 314247) has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no ICT- 287733.
This project is part of the program "Factories of the Future" (Call FP7-2012-NMP-ICT-FoF).