"All major manufacturers of production technology will be presenting their products and services in Hanover at the largest and most comprehensive exhibition of industrial production. Nobody can afford to miss it," says Christoph Miller, Managing Director EMO Hannover of the EMO organiser VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Association) in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

More than 1.780 exhibitors from 41 countries had applied by the registration deadline of December 1st 2018. The companies include market leaders in all technology areas such as DMG Mori, FFG, Mazak, Siemens, Grob, Doosan, Fanuc, Okuma, Makino, Index, GF Machining Solutions, Chiron, Trumpf, SLM, Stratasys, Paul Horn, Iscar, Sandvik, Kuka and many, many more. New companies are joining them every day.

EMO Hannover is indeed the only truly international platform for metalworking. In contrast to all other trade fairs which describe themselves as international on the basis of their exhibitors, EMO Hannover also attracts trade visitors from all over the world. In 2017, just under half of the roughly 130,000 visitors travelled to Hanover from outside Germany, with around 160 countries represented. The proportion rose to 64 per cent for the exhibitors.

"EMO Hannover is the undisputed innovation platform for metalworking machines, solutions and services," emphasises Miller. In 2017, 72 per cent of the exhibitors said they brought innovations to Hanover that they had developed especially for EMO. This wouldn't happen at any other fair, according to Miller.

Photo: CPV
EMO Hannover showcasing smart technologies for the intelligent factory

EMO Hannover is addressing one of the biggest challenges facing the industry with its Smart technologies driving tomorrow's production! theme. "What is decisive for intelligent factories is the comprehensive networking of people, plants and business processes along the entire value chain," explains Miller from the VDW. Networking in industry is gaining momentum much faster because greater processor power is now available which makes the processing of large amounts of data possible in the first place. According to estimates by the international market research institute International Data Corporation, 30 billion private and industrial endpoints could be networked worldwide by 2020.

Smart technologies are the key to greater productivity, better quality and more flexibility. These are the classic goals for new and further developments in production technology. Digitalisation and intelligent factory networking also facilitate new functions such as process monitoring or predictive maintenance, which go one step further with self-learning machines based on smart data and data analysis. These create the basis for new business models like the platform economy, allowing customers and providers to reach the next level of efficiency.

The top priority of almost every EMO exhibitor is to offer creative new solutions. New Industry 4.0 concepts are emerging in all areas: for machines, components, controls, measuring systems and material flows. "We are convinced that EMO Hannover 2019 will be a hotspot for new offerings and solutions for the smart factory," says Miller.

IoT in Production – A key focus of EMO Hannover 2019

IoT will be bundled in various constellations at EMO Hannover in order to highlight all facets of Industry 4.0:

Dedicated exhibition area for IoT in production

This section is reserved for individual exhibitors in the field of control technology, software and automation technology. Established control manufacturers such as Beckhoff, Bosch, Fanuc, Heidenhain and Siemens, but also engineering consortiums such as Adamos and Axoom, presented their IT platforms at EMO Hannover in 2017. "We know that this exhibition area also offers a highly attractive environment for IT providers such as IBM, HP, GE, SAP, Microsoft Oracle, Telekom and others if they want to boost their business with manufacturers of production technology," says Miller. EMO Hannover provides an ideal platform for this because all decision-makers from the entire production technology value chain are there – and interested in everything from product development to production, quality management and logistics. "Production planners today not only invest in machines, they also want to see integrated solutions, and no other trade fair offers this in such a concentrated form as EMO Hannover," sums up Miller.

Photo: CPV
Special show: Industry 4.0 area - smart solutions for your business

Innovative companies and renowned research institutes present intelligent solutions aimed at boosting their customers' business success in the Industry 4.0 area. These include intelligent components for process monitoring or operator support, solutions that ensure smooth data flow with maximum data security, and much more. The special show will also feature representatives from the field of research who will be presenting the current state of scientific development. In addition, the specialist forum will offer participants the opportunity to discuss existing products as well as future visions with a broad specialist audience. The VDW is developing the special show together with the Konradin Media Group.

National stands

National stands will also be featured in this area. The VDW is currently in talks with China, France, Japan, Switzerland and Taiwan. They all have their own national Industry 4.0 or IoT initiatives and are cordially invited to present them at EMO Hannover 2019.

Industry 4.0 Trend Forum

In addition, the VDW has joined forces with the Software association of the VDMA (Verband Deutscher Maschinen- und Anlagenbau - German Engineering Federation), the umbrella organisation for mechanical and plant engineering, the second-largest customer sector for machine tools. Together they are organising a high-calibre forum on the latest Industry 4.0 and machine learning trends, including presentations and panel discussions which will run throughout the EMO. The future of work will constitute a further focus.

umati – a common language for Industry 4.0

The interface standard for machine tools based on OPC UA, with all its functionalities, will finally be presented at EMO Hannover 2019. This provides neutral and open connection of machines to higher-level IT systems. It is a prerequisite for the success of Industry 4.0. Only then can data from different machine manufacturers with different control systems be transferred to ERP and MES systems or into the cloud. There they are further processed or evaluated and thus form the basis of new services and functions.

This connectivity is the key to all the added value and business models that the economy hopes Industry 4.0 will yield. Small and medium-sized companies in particular are counting on being able to connect their machines effectively in order to participate in the new IoT developments. This will help them concentrate on their core competences in their daily business.

This is why the VDW together with eight well-known German machine tool manufacturers and all major control suppliers launched the umati interface more than a year ago. umati stands for universal machine tool interface. To date, more than 20 use cases have been defined: these include at-a-glance overview of production, program progress and machine status, handling of a production order, creation of error statistics, and operating status in a time stream. They are described by over 100 relevant parameters, e.g. "Machine running yes/no". A joint working group was set up for OPC UA at the end of 2018. The international machine tool community is now able to participate in revising and disseminating the standard.

The goal is to present a complete implementation of the specification at EMO Hannover 2019 – to the extent that it is available by then – together with a larger number of partners. "The VDW is assuming that the first products will also be offered in which preconfigured OPC UA servers are integrated directly into the respective control units based on the specification, explains Miller.

EMO Hannover presenting topics on the future of industrial production

EMO Hannover 2019 will be addressing all the production-related challenges, from machine technology and IT solutions through to the changing world of work. It will be highlighting how much more productive, efficient and flexible the next generations of machines will be. With many supporting events, it will show how networked production is increasingly spreading to all areas. Order processing, production preparation and planning, manufacturing and logistics will all change. New functions and services are being created. And the people working in industry need to be given the skills to perform these tasks.

"EMO Hannover 2019 has plenty to offer on all these topics. The EMO organisers will be complementing the exhibitors' offerings with a wide range of supporting events and special shows. EMO will once again be a Mecca for international production technology and point the way for development in the coming years," concludes Miller of the VDW./.

Khac Kien