It is the close networking of industrial processes with cutting-edge IT technologies with the aim of creating a smart factory. In applying this production philosophy, Industry 4.0 will bring about a future convergence of the real and the virtual worlds.
Industry 4.0 lets you plan and then tour a new plant virtually already before building your production environment. This is made possible by simulating and emulating the individual process steps true to detail. Next, your entire plant is simulated in the software and you can then directly “take a tour” of the plant using VR goggles.
The simulation is so intelligent that the assistance systems will respond to your position – if you block the travel path, the assistants will stop just as they will do later in the real plant. The assistants will not continue their travel until you go to another position in the simulated production area.
Real time simulations are used as early as the planning stage so as to check with customers the viability of systems, processes and workflows before they are constructed or taken into operation. This has the considerable advantage that any errors can be identified and eliminated as early as the planning phase. It also gives rise to customised solutions early on, which customers can implement. This makes processes more reliable, and any wastage can be identified early on.
A virtual system is based on real environment, production and design data that exactly reflect the processes of the planned system. The simulation can be used in such a way that all processes, also regarding the controller, can be optimized until a perfect condition is attained. Thanks to virtual reality, each detail of the system is accessible and can be tested.