At the EMO 2017, Siemens is demonstrating the various connection and installation options of its high-performance and open cloud-based IoT operating system MindSphere for applications in the machine tool sector. The company is connecting over 240 different machine tools from over 140 manufacturers across the whole exhibition site using its “Manage MyMachines” app on MindSphere. In addition to this, machine manufacturers such as Heller are presenting new services and business models based on MindSphere to, for example, increase efficiency and productivity.
“The overwhelming willingness of machine tool manufacturers at the EMO to connect their machines to MindSphere shows the potential the sector sees in cloud-based digitalization solutions. Our cloud-based IoT operating system offers machine manufacturers many different ways to gain a competitive advantage by using their extensive domain expertise and developing high-performance applications for machine operators. They thus form the basis for new services and business models. MindSphere is therefore the key to developing and applying completely new digital technologies and a real enabler for having new core technological competencies at the right time,” explains Dr. Wolfgang Heuring, CEO of the Siemens Motion Control Business Unit at the EMO. Digitalization of machine tool operation, as can be achieved by connecting to MindSphere, allows machine manufacturers and operators to analyze and use large volumes of machine data – something which was previously not possible. This results in improved machine efficiency and greater productivity in the manufacturing network. MindSphere applications (MindApps) therefore provide a starting point for completely new applications in machine tools and innovative digital services, for example, in the fields of preventive maintenance, energy data management or resource optimization. The open access of the operating system is particularly important here, such as the use of open interfaces (APIs) to produce OEM and customer specific apps as well as open standards for connectivity such as OPC UA. MindSphere thus forms the basis for new business models for machine manufacturers, equipment manufacturers and new application areas for machine users.
Siemens MindApps provide the basic functions for machine manufacturers to enter the digital world. Machine manufacturers can use these basic functions to apply their specific and comprehensive machine and process knowledge to developing and marketing innovative customized applications, solutions and services for their customers. This allows them, for example, to monitor machines scattered throughout the world, or whole machine fleets, and to reduce their downtime.
MindSphere is also an open access platform for applications from other digital players, offering customers in the industrial sector added value on the road to greater efficiency. The business using the system has complete control over which services to use. The new possibilities available with MindSphere provide machine tool manufacturers, suppliers and operators with the basis for many new services for their specific customers to use.
Machine manufacturers and partner companies are showing their own MindSphere applications on the Siemens stand at the EMO in addition to the Siemens MindApp Manage MyMachines.
Manage MyMachines – the stepping stone to a digital business
With “Manage MyMachines/WorkOrdering”, Siemens is offering a plug-in to the “Manage MyMachines” MindApp which has been developed in conjunction with MindSphere partner Atos. This plug-in allows the “Manage MyMachines” application to connect to the OEM’s specific SAP ERP business processes. “Manage MyMachines” captures planned machine maintenance as well as unplanned machine downtime. “Manage MyMachines/WorkOrdering” automatically synchronizes these events with SAP ERP, allocating the relevant tasks to Service personnel.
“Manage MyMachines”, which quickly and easily connects for instance a Sinumerik 840D control to MindSphere, provides users with the information from connected machines. The application allows relevant machine data to be captured, analyzed and displayed. This provides users with a transparent overview of the current condition of machines as well as machine history. This reduces downtimes, optimizes service and maintenance processes, and increases productivity. Manage MyMachines is therefore the ideal building block for machine manufacturers who wish to bring cloud-based applications to market very quickly.
MindApp “HELLER4Services” in cooperation with machine manufacturer HELLER
Heller Maschinen und Technologie AG (Heller) has a global workforce of 2,580 and develops and manufactures machine tools for metal-cutting processes. Connecting HELLER manufacturing systems to cloud-based platforms represents a significant step in the implementation of Industry 4.0 for the engineering company. Part of the “HELLER4Industry” concept, in which the machine manufacturer combines its activities with the digitalization of its process chains, is “HELLER4Services”. The module, which is available in MindSphere as a MindApp, covers digital services which reduce maintenance and service costs over the life cycle of a machine tool. This produces a preventive, condition-oriented maintenance program which ensures disruptions and the associated expensive downtimes are prevented.
“HELLER4Services” allows machine data and their graphic representation to be evaluated in the “HELLER Services Interface”. The MindApp thus provides a comprehensive overview of the condition of the machine park and data analysis for any period of time, as well as synchronization of process data from production phases with any error messages which have occurred.
MindApps in collaboration with IT service provider Atos
As part of its cooperation with Siemens, Atos provides services both for the conception and the design of MindSphere applications. Atos has already developed six MindApps; these include the “Manufacturing Sustainability App” and the “Production Confirmation App”. Atos uses its MindApps to integrate data from production machines and different management systems into MindSphere where the data is collected and processed in the form of big data analytics. MindSphere customers therefore receive rolling and position-specific information on the current and anticipated status of production. The ready-to-use applications and comprehensive integration, infrastructure and security services available from Atos form the basis of further customer-specific MindSphere applications. The focus is on the development of ready-to-use applications which MindSphere customers can seamlessly connect to their existing IT systems.