On 23 September 2020, VDMA, ZVEI and 20 additional well-known German industrial companies founded the "Industrial Digital Twin Association" (IDTA). IDTA will drive forward the broad use and application of the Asset Administration Shell – the manufacturing industry’s digital twin. Developed primarily in the Plattform Industrie 4.0, the Asset Administration Shell is a core component of Industrie 4.0: it creates the conditions for collecting, exchanging and utilizing high quality data.
Key Technology for Industrie 4.0: The Digital Twin
The Asset Administration Shell (AAS) is both the virtual image and the of a hardware or software component in manufacturing (e.g. of a machine). For example, the operating data of a milling machine can be stored via the AAS. At the same time, the machine can be controlled or have its data read via the AAS. This lays the foundation for the application of AI and new business models – both for factory equipment suppliers and for users in the automotive and process industries, for example.
Technological anchor for SMEs
The user organisation is a safe haven for the Asset Administration Shell. It will further develop the AAS conceptually and in terms of content in an open source approach - for example, by integrating sub-models and information models (e.g. OPC UA Companion Specifications) and in the direction of international standardisation. At the same time, it will support component and system manufacturers, mechanical engineering companies, software companies and users: Training and consulting will facilitate the implementation of own AAS applications. Quality assurance, licensing and certification of AAS create a solid value proposition and investment security.
Associations drive platform spin-off, well-known companies on board
Experts from the Plattform Industrie 4.0 originally developed the concept of the . VDMA and ZVEI, together with Bitkom and 20 companies from mechanical and electrical engineering have now founded the "Industrial Digital Twin Association" (IDTA) to drive forward the broader rollout of the AAS. Besides the associations, the founding members include ABB, Asentics, Bosch, Bosch Rexroth, Danfoss, Endress+Hauser, Festo, Homag, KUKA, Lenze, Pepperl+Fuchs, Phoenix Contact, SAP, Schneider Electric, Schunk, Siemens, Trumpf, Turck, Volkswagen and Wittenstein.
"We are pleased that through VDMA and ZVEI we are gaining a neutral, yet industry-oriented, globally assertive platform that will introduce the core technology of the digital twin for Industrie 4.0 to the world as an open source solution," emphasises Frank Melzer, Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Plattform Industrie 4.0 and CTO of Festo.
About the Platform Industrie 4.0
The Plattform Industrie 4.0 is the central network in Germany for advancing the digital transformation in manufacturing. Over 350 players from more than 150 organisations are active in the platform, in close cooperation with politics, business, science, unions and associations. The Plattform supports German companies in implementing Industrie 4.0 through practical examples, information offerings and recommendations for action. The Plattform's numerous international collaborations underscore its strong role in the international Industrie 4.0 debate. More information is available at .