umati at EMO Hannover 2023: The future of connectivity
Are you interested in experiencing the Future of Connectivity live and in person? umati (universal machine technology interface) will allow visitors to do just that at EMO Hannover 2023 from September 18 to 23. The joint initiative of the VDW (German Machine Tool Builders' Association) and VDMA (German Engineering Federation) together with a network of numerous industry and research-based partners will once again be demonstrating how machines all over the world can communicate with each other simply, seamlessly and securely.
The story so far: umati celebrated its first major appearance at EMO Hannover in 2019 with a live demonstration. The global network of partners has now grown to over 320 members and counting. Numerous OPC UA specifications, which are vital for the open and standardized exchange of data, have been added since then. The most recent example was the specifications for plastics processing machines and additive manufacturing systems. This is therefore an excellent time to bring everyone up to speed.
The central information point is the umati stand in Hall 9, F24. Meet-the-expert rounds will be held here twice a day at 11:00 and 15:00, where interested parties can obtain first-hand information from the umati team and representatives of umati partner companies on the background, technology and benefits of open, standardized data interfaces for mechanical engineering. Various exhibits will allow visitors to experience at first-hand how sophisticated the technical solution has become. The stands of the OPC Foundation and the Machine Information Interoperability (MII) department of the VDMA are also close by. Together they represent a mighty triumvirate: OPC UA as the underlying technology, the OPC UA Companion Specifications as the global production language for the numerous technologies of the machinery and plant engineering industry (driven by the VDMA), and finally umati which is responsible for implementation and marketing. Dr. Alexander Broos, Head of Research and Technology at the VDW (German Machine Tool Builders' Association), is pleased about the closeness of the three entities: "For us, networking involves connecting not only machines but also people. After all, the intelligent linking of machines is an ongoing process that can only succeed if it is supported by a strong community working together."
The numerous partner companies together with their machines, components and software solutions form the framework of the live demonstration. The sectors featured at EMO Hannover include manufacturers of machine tools but also suppliers of geometric metrology, additive manufacturing, robotics, image processing and, of course, software. Nils Tersteegen, Marketing Manager at Fanuc Germany, Neuhausen auf den Fildern, explains why connectivity is an industry-wide topic: “Connectivity is an essential tool to make factories more efficient and production safer. Fanuc has been a partner of the umati initiative from the beginning, as we believe that an independent interface will allow machines, robots and peripherals to grow together and provide added value to all. With umati, Fanuc controllers, machines and robots can be quickly and efficiently integrated into our customers' IT environment.”
Visitors can follow what is happening via a QR code attached to each device connected to the umati demonstrator. The display shows the data flowing directly into the umati.app, where it is represented together with data from other devices, making it available to users in a uniform manner. Software providers can also patch themselves into this data flow and demonstrate the benefits of their products in real-time based on actual data from the EMO Hannover 2023 machine pool. For software providers like Retuner GmbH from Nufringen, the advantages of the live demonstration and a partnership with umati are obvious, as Managing Director Guido Colombo knows: “In an ever-evolving technological landscape, Retuners concept of Industry 5.0 represents a pivotal juncture in the digitalization software industry. umati keeps us updated on OPC UA Standard evolution while putting us in contact with machine builders and increase our international visibility through effective communication and tradeshow exposure. Together we fuel the change to Industry 5.0 and help SMEs around the world manage digital transformation quickly and effortlessly.”
umati and MT Connect join forces
umati will also be presenting three further new developments at EMO: umati and MT Connect, the U.S. standardization initiative, have resolved to join forces. In addition, the seamless communication of manufacturing data from machines via OPC UA to the Asset Administration Shell (AAS) will be demonstrated together with the Industrial Digital Twin Association (IDTA) and the Institute for Control Technology of Machine Tools and Manufacturing Systems (ISW) at the University of Stuttgart. And finally, the VDMA, VDW, Deutsche Telekom and various other partners will be demonstrating a federated data exchange space for monitoring the service life of cutting tools, as a reference prototype for the German government's Manufacturing-X initiative, which is now gaining momentum. "umati thus proves that functioning solutions can be developed within a short space of time together with the relevant partners in a standardized, open and neutral manner," says Broos, summing up the innovations.
The umati presence at the event will also include networking and information events as well as the comprehensive use of online communication, especially in social media such as LinkedIn and X. Interested parties can obtain further details from the umati website for EMO Hannover 2023 at: https://umati.org/emo-hannover-2023/