Industrie 4.0: What is it?

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Today we stand on the cusp of a fourth industrial revolution. A revolution which promises to marry the worlds of production and network connectivity in an “Internet of Things” making “INDUSTRIE 4.0” a reality.

The world as we know and experience it today has been shaped by three major technological revolutions. The first Industrial Revolution, beginning in the UK at the tail end of the 18th century and ending in the mid-19th century, represented a radical shift away from an agrarian economy to one defined by the introduction of mechanical production methods.

The second period of radical transformation with the advent of industrial production and the birth of the factory at the start of the 20th century was no less precipitous; ushering in as it did an age of affordable consumer products for mass consumption.

In the late 1960s the use of electronics and IT in industrial processes opened the door to a new age of optimized and automated production.

The Internet of Things and Services can now be added to the historical list of forces (mechanization, electricity, and information technology) powering industrial change. The changes being wrought by INDUSTRIE 4.0 will see it become the global language of production. INDUSTRIE 4.0 promises to increase manufacturing productivity levels by up to 50 percent – and halve the amount of resources required.

Germany’s position as an embedded systems technology leader gives birth to enabling cyber-physical system (CPS) technologies which ingeniously marry the digital virtual world with the real world. Cyber-physical production systems (CPPS) made up of smart machines, logistics systems and production facilities allow peerless ICT-based integration for vertically integrated and networked manufacturing.

Germany has set itself the goal of being an integrated industry lead market and provider by 2020.

From Industry 1.0 to Industry 4.0 | © DFKI 2011 Source: From Industry 1.0 to Industry 4.0 | © DFKI 2011


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