EMO Hannover: Klingelnberg implements Industry 4.0 philosophy with cyber-physical production system for gears

Machine builder Klingelnberg, a specialist in gear and transmission technology, will present GearEngine® at the EMO trade show in September. With this IT platform, currently in development for the cyber-physical production system, the system provider is taking gear production up to level of Industry 4.0.

Following a four-year hiatus, EMO, the world’s leading trade fair for metalworking, will once again be opening its gates in Hanover from September 18 to 23, 2017. With this year’s motto, “Connecting systems for intelligent production,” it is placing the focus on digitization and networking in production. As is fitting for the theme of the show, system provider Klingelnberg will present the current status of its GearEngine, an IT platform on which Klingelnberg implements its cyber-physical closed loop production system: GearEngine provides all the data management services for the software programs, production equipment, and parts history and serves as the basis for data analyses aimed at troubleshooting the source of errors.

Industry 4.0 in practice
When developing its cyber-physical production system (CPPS) for gears, Klingelnberg systematically implemented the Industry 4.0 philosophy: Along the entire gear manufacturing process chain, the CPPS compares the real component in the physical world against a digital twin in the cyber world. For the machining steps, the digital twin provides the relevant nominal geometry for the real component. This makes it possible to introduce quality gates throughout the process chain as part of the CPPS and to use these to optimize the manufacturing process. With geometric measurements of the component in the respective production step, production deviations are identified where they occur. So-called closed loop software modules calculate modified machining parameters based on the measured production deviations to minimize the production deviation of the respective machine.

The same applies to gear cutting tool setup. Since the geometry of a stick blade head is available in the digital world, a highly precise gear cutting tool can be provided for machining by comparing the real tool geometry against a superimposed closed loop process. The efficiency gains are achieved in the high first pass yield, that is, the extremely small number of defective components, as well as in the reliable set-up and machining processes.

IT platform – the “heart” of the CPPS
An information technology platform is needed to realize the duality of the real and digital world. The IT platform on which Klingelnberg is building its cyber-physical closed loop production system is called GearEngine. A number of services come together here: GearEngine manages the data for the gear and all data for the production equipment, and ensures the traceability of the manufacturing process for each and every gear – provided it can be identified by DMC codes or RFID chips. As soon as a gear is identified for the first time in the process chain, GearEngine creates a digital component file. Every machine involved in the process reports the parameters required for the gear currently being machined to the platform. Thus the real component and digital file are created as the value chain progresses.

By networking the machine tools and gear calculation software with GearEngine, the digital data is always immediately available for every machine involved. The IT platform even monitors the current wear status of all production equipment automatically. GearEngine also supplies statistical information on production processes. Today, this information is still exported to qs-STAT from every machine via a specially programmed interface and is evaluated there. GearEngine provides this service to the qs-STAT program for all connected machines.

Visitors to the EMO can obtain information about this innovation and Klingelnberg’s entire innovation campaign in hall 26, stand B82. Klingelnberg’s on-site team is looking forward to interesting “shop talk” and stimulating discussions.