At the 2019 year's HANNOVER MESSE, seven leading companies in mechanical engineering, industrial automation, and software joined forces to form the Open Industry 4.0 Alliance. By coming together, the participants hope to abolish proprietary standalone solutions and thus provide the potentially ultimate impetus for digitizing the European industry. Founding members Endress+Hauser, Beckhoff, Hilscher, ifm, KUKA, Multivac, and SAP are eager to see all kinds of companies join them in their quest.
Balluff, Gebhardt, Pepperl+Fuchs, Schmidtsche Schack, Samson, and WIKA have already registered their interest in coming on board. All members have made a joint commitment to create a standardized open ecosystem for operating highly automated factories and process engineering plants that incorporates logistics and services. "The open architecture of the Open Industry 4.0 Alliance meets all the requirements of the process industry," says Matthias Altendorf, CEO of the Endress+Hauser Group, adding: "It is built on standards, ensures transparency across all business processes and guarantees the integrity of systems, enabling operators of process engineering plants to leverage the potential of Industry 4.0."
The Open Manufacturing Platform (OMP) has expanded, with new steering committee members and new working groups established. OMP is an alliance founded in 2019 to help manufacturing companies accelerate innovation at scale through cross-industry collaboration, knowledge, and data sharing as well as access to new technologies.
The OMP was founded under the umbrella of the Joint Development Foundation, which is part of the Linux Foundation. Original members The BMW Group and Microsoft welcome Anheuser-Busch InBev ( AbInBev ), Bosch Group and ZF Friedrichshafen AG as steering committee members. The OMP steering committee has approved several working groups to focus on core areas important to the industry, including IoT Connectivity, semantic data models, Industrial IoT reference architecture, and core services for ATS (autonomous transport systems).
The common approach to industry challenges
The expansion of intelligent manufacturing is driving new efficiencies and increased productivity, as well as revealing new challenges. Within the industry, legacy and proprietary systems have resulted in data silos, making operation wide insight and transformation daunting. As common challenges across the industry, they often require a high degree of investment for modest returns within any one organization. The OMP has been developed to address this, where manufacturers and their value chains come together to identify and develop solutions that address these nondifferentiating problems. It brings together experts across the manufacturing sector — including discrete and process manufacturing, transportation and consumer goods, industrial equipment, and more.