Hannover, 26 April 2016. Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Sigmar Gabriel: “Since being founded one year ago, Plattform Industrie 4.0 has developed into one of the largest global networks in the area of industry digitalisation. It is in high demand as a cooperation partner. That is a huge success and we have to continue moving forward. No country in the world can benefit more from industry digitalisation than Germany. In order to exploit this opportunity, we need Plattform Industrie 4.0 as well as structured and continuous cooperation between industry, trade unions, science, associations and politics. Within a very short space of time, the platform has been able to develop application examples and guidelines for companies and especially for medium-sized companies. Together with the Competence Centres 4.0 funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs, they provide medium-sized companies with an excellent array of competent information and advice.”
Federal Research Minister Johanna Wanka stated: “Industry 4.0 can only succeed if companies are able to apply the opportunities offered by digitalisation. We know that medium-sized companies are developing some good ideas and prototypes, but it is not yet clear whether these will work under the conditions of Industry 4.0. We are launching a programme to offer medium-sized enterprises the possibility to try out their innovative ideas in test areas.” In addition to this programme to support practical trials of Industry 4.0 solutions, Wanka also announced at the HANNOVER MESSE that a central contact and coordination office would be established at the University of Stuttgart, which would facilitate and support companies’ access to the test centres at a federal level and in a targeted way. “We want to offer medium-sized enterprises a one-stop service”, said Wanka. Companies may be eligible for up to 100,000 Euro in support for applicant projects lasting between three and twelve months.
Four fields of activity are at the heart of the platform’s work:
1. Plattform Industrie 4.0 develops concrete recommendations for action for companies and politics
“In order for systems to be able to communicate with each other without error, binding global rules and standards play a central role. Our reference architecture model RAMI 4.0 which was developed in Germany and emerged from Plattform Industrie 4.0, is an important step in the right direction”, says Prof. Dr. Siegfried Russwurm, CTO and member of the board at Siemens AG as well as member of Plattform Industrie 4.0’s management during the future-oriented dialogue at the HANNOVER MESSE. “RAMI provides a framework which, for the first time, addresses the entire scope of horizontal and vertical IT integration as well as product and production life cycles and includes these concepts into a corresponding DIN specification. This is an important contribution to international standard-setting – ‘made in Germany’.” RAMI 4.0 incorporates all main technological elements of Industry 4.0 into one model and offers standardized orientation to companies from different sectors.
The question of Education and Qualification 4.0 was also a central topic at the HANNOVER MESSE. During the social partner dialogue, company representatives and works councils discussed what actions will be required.
“Plattform Industrie 4.0’s work has also made it possible to open up the purely technology-centred debate on digitalisation to questions relating to labour and employment. Our aim is to use the potential offered by digitalisation to put people first. This also includes working on a new policy for education and qualification that is adapted to future challenges. Only by combining it with Education 4.0 can Industry 4.0 be harnessed as an opportunity for companies and employees. It is the key to successful employment policies of the future. Worker participation is of pivotal importance when it comes to designing an offer of this kind”, says Jörg Hofmann, First Chairman of the IG Metall union and member of Plattform Industrie 4.0’s management.
2. New initiatives emerging out of the network Plattform Industrie 4.0
Plattform Industrie 4.0 is an agile network for new ideas which also gets initiatives outside of the platform rolling. Reinhard Clemens, member of the board of Deutsche Telekom AG and member of Plattform Industrie 4.0’s management highlights that Plattform Industrie 4.0 is particularly focused on transfer of practices: “It plays a decisive role when developing new offers. For instance, the association Labs Network Industrie 4.0 was founded by companies and associations which were already involved in Plattform Industrie 4.0. The aim was to offer a broad range of companies an easy ad practical point of access to the topic of Industry 4.0.” SMEs wanting to test new technologies for instance can approach it. It is complemented by the “Standardization Council Industrie 4.0” which was launched during the HANNOVER MESSE by Plattform Industrie 4.0 actors. It will make a significant contribution to accelerating standardization processes while including medium-sized businesses.
3. Germany and Plattform Industrie 4.0 are in-demand as international partners
For Industry 4.0, international cooperation is important, as becomes especially clear when it comes to the issue of standardization. Cooperation with the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) and the countries of China, Japan and France will contribute to good solutions in this area.
4. Plattform Industrie 4.0 supports companies
Plattform Industrie 4.0 offers concrete instruments and event possibilities for companies. For instance, the platform has its own stall at the HANNOVER MESSE (Hall 8, C25). The offer which has already been developed includes:
- The online map Industry 4.0 () with about 250 application examples shows where Industry 4.0 is already being applied in practice today.
- The new online library Industry 4.0 () contains guidelines, publications and studies and offers simple and systematic access.
- During networking events on site, the platform provides direct information on the digital shift and raises awareness on this topic, particularly among SMEs. It cooperates with associations, chambers and other initiatives and institutions, for instance in the framework of the Germany-wide series of IHK (Chamber of Industry and Commerce) events .
High-Level-Panel on "International Cooperation - Plattform Industrie 4.0 and Industrial Internet Consortium"; Mo 04/25/2016
Photography session with leadership representatives of Plattform Industrie 4.0 and heads of working groups; Mo 04/26/2016
State Secretary Matthias Machnig vistis the fair stand of the Plattform Industrie 4.0