Industrie 4.0 at the ZVEI: The Industrie 4.0 management team

In November 2013 the Industrie 4.0 management team was established at the ZVEI. Its aim is to determine the need for research and to help shape and drive forward the necessary standards for Industrie 4.0 applications from the viewpoint of the electrical industry.

The Industrie 4.0 management team shapes Industrie 4.0 at ZVEI.

© Mihai Simonia -

​Before Industrie 4.0 becomes reality, the specific technological requirements for the digital future of production must be clarified and common standards must be adopted.

This requires numerous players to work together: across industries among information and communication technology (ICT), mechanical engineering and the electrical industry, as well as within each individual key industry.

After all, how can complete data transmission from the shop floor to the office floor be realised? What does the digital interface between these two worlds need to look like? What is the current status of cyber security? And finally, how can the benefits of Industrie 4.0 be made tangible to the users? The ZVEI-Führungskreis Industrie 4.0 [Industrie 4.0 management team] at the ZVEI is working on the answers to these questions.

The team is developing solutions for Industrie 4.0 applications on the part of the entire shop floor and precisely defining the mentioned interfaces between ICT and the automation industry. The goal is to bring about consensus within the industry on topics related to the digital future of production. The providers of information technology and their users are therefore jointly working on use cases, specific case studies on the practicality of Industrie 4.0 technologies. Currently the management team is drawing up use cases from three different user industries – from the chemical, mechanical engineering and automotive sectors. It thus covers the entire bandwidth of the Industrie 4.0 use cases, from continuous production or discrete manufacturing to a batch size of 1. The strength of the ZVEI in this regard is that all companies that influence the design of Industrie 4.0 applications – from sensors and relays to the control system and software – are organised in the Association. This allows the entire bandwidth of the shop floor to be represented.

However, Industrie 4.0 can succeed only across industries – and thus in close partnership among industry associations. In addition to the collaboration with strong partners, such as the VDI/VDE-Gesellschaft Mess- und Automatisierungstechnik (GMA) [VDI/VDE Society for Measurement and Automatic Control (VDI/VDE-GMA)], the Deutsche Kommission Elektrotechnik Elektronik Informationstechnik (DKE) [German Commission for Electrical, Electronic & Information Technologies], and research institutes on the Industrie 4.0 management team, lively discussion with political players, scientific community, trade unions and Bitkom and VDMA is sought within the framework of Plattform Industrie 4.0.

The Industrie 4.0 management team encourages the exchange with information technology and users. To this end, it creates the space the electrical industry needs to be able to work out possible solutions within the industry.

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