In accordance with the industry 4.0 concept, manufacturing process steps as well as the materials themselves are going to be more and more digitalized within the next years. The “digital twin” representing the simulated and measured dataset of the (semi-finished) product can be used to control and optimize the individual processing steps and help to reduce costs and expenditure of time in product development, manufacturing, and recycling. In the present work, two material characterization methods based on Lamb waves were evaluated and compared. For demonstration purpose, both methods were shown at a standard industrial product - copper ribbons, often used in photovoltaic modules as well as in high-current microelectronic devices. By numerical approximation of the Rayleigh-Lamb dispersion model on measured phase velocities second order elastic constants (Young’s modulus, Poisson’s ratio) were determined. Furthermore, the effective third order elastic constants were evaluated by applying elastic, “non-destructive”, mechanical stress on the samples. In this way, small microstructural variations due to mechanical preconditioning could be detected for the first time. Both methods were compared with respect to precision and inline application capabilities. Microstructure of the samples was systematically varied by mechanical loading and annealing. Changes in the elastic ultrasound transport properties were correlated with results from microstructural analysis and mechanical testing. In summary, monitoring the elastic material properties of plate-like structures using Lamb waves is valuable for inline and non-destructive material characterization and manufacturing process control. Second order elastic constants analysis is robust over wide environmental and sample conditions, whereas the effective third order elastic constants highly increase the sensitivity with respect to small microstructural changes. Both Lamb wave based characterization methods are fitting perfectly into the industry 4.0 concept.
The trend of digitization significantly changes the role of data for enterprises. Data turn from an enabler to an intangible organizational asset that requires management and qualifies as a tradeable good. The idea of a networked economy has gained momentum in the data domain as collaborative approaches for data management emerge. Traditional organizational knowledge consequently needs to be extended by comprehensive knowledge about data. The knowledge about data is vital for organizations to ensure that data quality requirements are met and data can be effectively utilized and sovereignly governed. As this specific knowledge has been paid little attention to so far by academics, the aim of the research presented in this paper is to conceptualize it by proposing a “data knowledge model”. Relevant model entities have been identified based on a design science research (DSR) approach that iteratively integrates insights of various industry case studies and literature research.
Applications of the Hausdorff space and its mappings into tangent spaces are outlined, including their fractal dimensions and self-similarities. The paper details this theory set up and further describes virtualizations and atomization of manufacturing processes. It demonstrates novel concurrency principles that will guide manufacturing processes and resources configurations. Moreover, varying levels of details may be produced by up folding and breaking down of newly introduced generic models. This choice of layered generic models for units and systems aspects along specific aspects allows research work in parallel to other disciplines with the same focus on all levels of detail. More credit and easier access are granted to outside disciplines for enriching manufacturing grounds. Specific mappings and the layers give hints for chances for interdisciplinary outcomes and may highlight more details for interoperability standards, as already worked on the international level. The new rules are described, which require additional properties concerning all involved entities for defining distributed decision cycles, again on the base of self-similarity. All properties are further detailed and assigned to a maturity scale, eventually displaying the smartness maturity of a total shopfloor or a factory. The paper contributes to the intensive ongoing discussion in the field of intelligent distributed manufacturing and promotes solid concepts for implementations of Cyber Physical Systems and the Internet of Things into manufacturing industry, like industry 4.0, as discussed in German-speaking countries.
The German manufacturing industry has to withstand an increasing global competition on product quality and production costs. As labor costs are high, several industries have suffered severely under the relocation of production facilities towards aspiring countries, which have managed to close the productivity and quality gap substantially. Established manufacturing companies have recognized that customers are not willing to pay large price premiums for incremental quality improvements. As a consequence, many companies from the German manufacturing industry adjust their production focusing on customized products and fast time to market. Leveraging the advantages of novel production strategies such as Agile Manufacturing and Mass Customization, manufacturing companies transform into integrated networks, in which companies unite their core competencies. Hereby, virtualization of the process- and supply-chain ensures smooth inter-company operations providing real-time access to relevant product and production information for all participating entities. Boundaries of companies deteriorate, as autonomous systems exchange data, gained by embedded systems throughout the entire value chain. By including Cyber-Physical-Systems, advanced communication between machines is tantamount to their dialogue with humans. The increasing utilization of information and communication technology allows digital engineering of products and production processes alike. Modular simulation and modeling techniques allow decentralized units to flexibly alter products and thereby enable rapid product innovation. The present article describes the developments of Industry 4.0 within the literature and reviews the associated research streams. Hereby, we analyze eight scientific journals with regards to the following research fields: Individualized production, end-to-end engineering in a virtual process chain and production networks. We employ cluster analysis to assign sub-topics into the respective research field. To assess the practical implications, we conducted face-to-face interviews with managers from the industry as well as from the consulting business using a structured interview guideline. The results reveal reasons for the adaption and refusal of Industry 4.0 practices from a managerial point of view. Our findings contribute to the upcoming research stream of Industry 4.0 and support decision-makers to assess their need for transformation towards Industry 4.0 practices.