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METAV 2018 showcases flexible utilisation options for the digital twin
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The challenges entailed by the

omnipresent Industry 4.0 hype are immense: integration into flexible

manufacturing processes, assuring process stability and production quality.

Metrological technology has a particularly exacting remit in this context:

fewer measurements in the measuring room – more measurements at the line

itself. Solutions of this kind increasingly have to be integrated into a

self-organising production environment. Stefan Staab, Product Manager KMG

(Coordinate Measuring Machines) at Wenzel Group GmbH & Co. KG, Wiesthal,

explains what role modern-day metrological technology can and must play

here.


What contribution can modern-day metrological technology make towards

product optimisation in a networked manufacturing environment?


Stefan Staab: Close-to-production measurements featuring the requisite

measuring-process capability enable results to be incorporated directly in

the process. For example, measures can be initiated at upstream production

steps, and downstream production steps adapted to suit the conditions and

preconditions involved.


How smart is present-day metrological and testing technology – is there

practicable data access via web portals or using smartphone/mobile-phone

apps?


Stefan Staab: As one of the major innovators in metrological technology, we

are continually design-enhancing our measuring and testing technologies. In

the context of Industry 4.0, too, we are steadily expanding our product

range, and demonstrating in specific applications how manufacturing

companies can benefit from the ongoing digital transformation. With our

smart Intelligent Machine Interface (IMI) software package, the measuring

instruments are equipped with a new level of intelligence. This collects

and analyses performance-related information, and enables the measuring

machines to be remote-controlled. So the ongoing status of all measuring

machines is visible at a glance. A simple double-click calls up more

detailed information at any time. That can be done both from the workplace

and by using mobile devices like smartphones or tablets. This access and

this sensitive data transfer are subject to extremely stringent security

requirements and conditions, all of which serves to ensure that no data can

be unexpectedly viewed and utilised by unauthorised persons.


This software solution offers extensive options for controlling and

analysing the metrological tasks involved, the workpieces being measured,

and the machines employed for this purpose, thus providing information for

the user that is now available for life to the workpiece and the measuring

machine as a digital twin, and enables it to be intelligently and flexibly

used.





What role do simulation technologies play for process optimisation?


Stefan Staab: In the context of Industry 4.0, which for us is more than a

buzzword, a huge array of different simulation technologies are gaining

steadily in perceived importance. We regard it as vital to generate real

benefits for our users from the technologies we develop. Right from the

start, we analysed what Industry 4.0 specifically means for our products

and processes.



What are you expecting in this area from the METAV 2018 in Düsseldorf –

what will you be exhibiting there?


Stefan Staab: The METAV is for us a key element in our trade fair planning.

We are once again expecting numerous trade visitors who are specifically

interested in measuring and testing technologies, and are looking forward

to new contacts and instructive conversations. We shall be showcasing our

high-performance bridge machines in the LH series as a line-integrated

solution with automated part detection and automated pick-and-place robots.

We shall also be exhibiting another bridge machine from the LH series in

conjunction with the revolutionary Revo-Multisensor 5-axis measuring system

from Renishaw. This solution offers excellent measuring flexibility without

any loss in accuracy, and achieves significantly shorter throughput times

compared to conventional measuring systems. Other highlights at the fair

will include our Intelligent Machine Interface software package and the new

generation of our successful Core high-speed scanning system, which has now

been performatively enhanced, offers automatic environment protection, and

is ideally suited for automation. In addition, we have expanded our

successful Exact computer tomograph series for measuring and testing

complex internal and external structures to include a recently developed

system that sets new standards in terms of performance and measuring

volume.

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