Sharing Holistic Manufacturing Concepts at Hannover Messe |

Sharing Holistic Manufacturing Concepts at Hannover Messe

April 222013
Sharing Holistic Manufacturing Concepts at Hannover Messe

Hannover Messe – April 8-12, 2013

By Bill Lydon, Editor

I always look forward to attending the Hannover Fair because it covers a broad range of topics and provides a holistic view of industrial technology. The umbrella theme of the 2013 event was “Integrated Industry” that encompassed technology, cooperation and collaboration across corporate and sector boundaries. The Integrated Industry theme has become important with the continuing integration of mechanical design, embedded automation/control, business system integration, and machine–to-machine (M2M) communications technologies. Core topics at the event included Industrial Automation & IT, Energy & Environmental Technology, Power Transmission & Control, Motion, Production Technologies & Services, and Research & Development.

Hannover Messe attracted 6,550 exhibitors from 62 nations with a total of over 225,000 attendees. One in every four visitors came from abroad, mainly from the European Union (50 percent) as well as from South, East and Central Asia (20 percent). Besides Germany, the largest visitor contingents were from the Netherlands (3,500) and China (3,400), followed by India, Italy and Austria.

The Russian Federation was the partner country this year. Russia’s focus included energy, industrial automation and new materials.  More than 100 Russian companies occupied a total display area of 4,500 square meters. Russia had a decentralized main display and a number of satellite displays.  Their central pavilion was located in Hall 26 and several “Partner Country Russia” satellite pavilions were located in Hannover Messe’s various tradeshows including Energy, Research & Technology, Motion, Drives & Automation and IndustrialGreenTec.  The cities/regions of Moscow and St. Petersburg participated in the Metropolitan Solutions exhibition. In addition, individual exhibitors from Russia had their own stand-alone displays throughout the Fair.

Opening Ceremony

Sunday evening at the Hannover Congress Hall, Dr. Angela Merkel, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany officially open Hannover Messe 2013 after she and others addressed attendees.

Attendees were treated to an “industrial” dance performance by ballet dancers of the Mariinsky Theater (Kirov Ballet) from Saint-Petersburg Russia.

Stephan Weil, Prime Minister of Lower Saxony, addressed the audience asserting, “There is a renaissance of industry.” “Industry in Germany generates about one quarter overall economic value added - it is responsible for three-quarters of exports, and just under 90% of investment in research and development.” He believes this year’s Hannover Messe theme of “Integrated Industry” is the blending of old and new economies.  Weil said, “The integration of industrial technology and information technology represent a structural change that is a major opportunity.”

Friedhelm Loh, President of the German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers’ Association, shared his belief that this is a time of revolution in industrial processes with industry, science, and research “gearing up for integrated intelligent process structures.” He commented that competition in free and open markets is the driving force behind developments for the good of mankind and the greatest assets that commercial enterprises have to offer is their human capital - a skilled and motivated workforce. He noted that in the past year Germany’s electrical and mechanical engineering industries employed 1.8 million people and has invested 32 billion euro in research and development. “A coherent policy on education and innovation remains a key to global economic growth, jobs and prosperity,” said Loh.

Hermes Award

The winner of this year’s Hermes Award was Bosch Rexroth AG. The award was presented during the opening ceremony of HANNOVER MESSE 2013 by Prof. Johanna Wanka, Federal Minister of Education and Research. The company received the award for its Open Core Engineering project. This is a software solution that combines the previously separate worlds of PLC and IT into an integral offering comprising open standards, software tools, function packages and an Open Core interface.

Winner Company Bosch Rexroth Dr.-Ing. Karl Tragl and Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wahlster, Chairman of the HERMES AWARD Jury

Open Core Engineering combines traditional programmable logic control with high-level language programming. It also enables user programs on external devices such as smartphones and tablets, with native apps reading and writing data into the control system. OEMs can use customized software functions to set themselves apart from their competitors without direct support from the company.  Click here for more information on Open Core Engineering.

Vladimir Putin

Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, addressed the audience stating that Russia is open to mutual beneficial business relationships. “We are aware of our problems and working to address them,” said Putin. He discussed improving the business climate and indicated that the birth rate has improved, reflecting the improving confidence that citizens have in the economy. Putin noted that Russia has been a member of WTO (World Trade Organization) since August 2012. Russia's entry into the World Trade Organization has been a long time in coming, starting with negotiations soon after the breakup of the Soviet Union. He thanked Germany for its support during Russia’s effort to join WTO. “Foreign companies will be able to operate according to clear principles and regulations…,” said Putin. More than 6,000 German companies operate in Russia. And in 2012, Russian companies invested 4.4 billion dollars in Germany. He also discussed educational activities between the countries and their focus on improving the well-being of Russian citizens with job creation and education.

Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation and Dr. Angela Merkel, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany

Dr. Angela Merkel

Dr. Angela Merkel, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, noted the long relationship between Germany and Russia. She commented that they have talked a lot about innovation, research, training and educating young, motivated people at the annual Petersburg Dialogue, a biannual meeting of politicians, businessmen, and civil-society representatives from Russia and Germany. The Petersburger Dialog was founded an Open Forum in 2001 by Vladimir Putin and Gerhard Schroeder, then Chancellor of Germany.  The purpose of the Forum is to provide to develop German-Russian relations with the major goals of increasing mutual understanding between Germany and Russia, developing mutual cooperation in all social spheres, and broadening contacts between the two nations. The Forum’s activity is organized as annual conferences hosted alternately in Germany and Russia - special meetings to discuss specific issues, and regular meetings of thematic working groups (Politics, Economics, Education and Science, Mass Media, Civic Society, the Church, A Workshop of the Future, Culture).

Merkel addressed the opportunities associated with the changes in the industry and technology, suggesting that Hannover Fair attendees’ be ambassadors introducing others to the concepts of Integrated Industry and Industry 4.0.  Merkel noted, “This is a slogan coming to life.” Merkel expressed that this is a new opportunity to leave their mark as trailblazers in this digital industrial manufacturing revolution.

Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 was a thread in the presentations at the opening ceremony under the umbrella of this year’s “Integrated Industry” theme. A key part of the 4th industrial revolution is being driven by the internet. At the 2011 Hannover Opening ceremony, Professor Wolfgang Wahlster, Director and CEO of the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence, introduced the concept of Industry 4.0. He discussed how Germany defined it to focus on the development steps towards the “Internet of Things” as Cyber-Physical Systems incorporate embedded Sensor-Actuator Systems with semantic M2M (Machine to Machine) Communication and active Product Memories. The goals are control of the full value chains of production in near real time and very high resolution with networking of technological and business processes.

Thoughts & Observations

The opening ceremony is always a great event that punctuates Germany’s unique commitment to engineering, manufacturing and technology. Each year the partner country brings a different perspective that stretches attendees’ thoughts and perspectives.

Politicians from various countries have different political views for sure, but at Hannover Messe everyone is mainly focused on technology, engineering and manufacturing with the end goal of improving peoples’ lives and well-being. This goal always comes through loud and clear.

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