Dr. Karsten Heuser, VP of AM at Siemens, has accurately stated that “AM companies are the digital natives of the manufacturing industry”. This accurate description reflects the fact that – as we have written before – the AM process is the heart of the automated production workflow. While this full process integration is still far from complete, it is ongoing and it passes through PLM, MES, and cloud software, all leading toward 3D printing IoT integration. EOS joining of Siemen’s MindShare IoT based operating system is yet another clear indication of this ongoing transition.
EOS is the world’s leading technology supplier in the field of industrial 3D printing of metals and polymers. The company has now officially joined the MindSphere World e.V, the association that promotes the open, cloud-based IoT operating system MindSphere. EOS is the first pure player provider of 3D printing solutions to join the organization, which is based inside Siemens’ Nurberg’s HQ and comprises companies like Festo, Trumpf and Kuka. Leveraging over 30 years of 3D printing expertise, EOS will participate actively in the organization’s 3D printing IoT related activities. Among other things, the company is expected to chair an Additive Manufacturing workgroup.
The organization aims to expand the ecosystem around MindSphere on a global basis. MindSphere is the open, cloud-based IoT operating system developed by Siemens that connects plants, systems, and machines. By this, companies can leverage data originating from various sources for extensive analysis and product management functions, regardless of location.
“With a community of industrial and IT companies of all sizes and sectors, as well as independent developers and start-ups, we aim to establish and drive an ecosystem based on MindSphere”
“With a community of industrial and IT companies of all sizes and sectors, as well as independent developers and start-ups, we aim to establish and drive an ecosystem based on MindSphere. So we are very pleased to have EOS on board, a pioneer for 3D printing solutions. The company’s technological know-how in additive manufacturing contributes to the further development of MindSphere and its applications, adding significant value to the ecosystem,” said Jan Mrosik, Chair of the Management Board of MindSphere World.
Industrial 3D printing a key element in the digital factory
As a pioneer in the field of industrial 3D printing, EOS is working constantly to integrate its solutions in its customers’ production workflows. With EOSCONNECT, EOS is offering a software solution that serves as a gateway and, in combination with MindSphere, makes it possible to integrate EOS 3D printing systems in the Internet of Things (IoT). Companies are thus able to connect networks of machines worldwide, making their manufacturing capabilities even more flexible and productive.
“The next step is to meaningfully integrate industrial 3D printing in both existing as well as future manufacturing environments”
“In the course of Industry 4.0, manufacturing scenarios are continuously becoming more digitalized,” said Dr. Tobias Abeln, Chief Technical Officer (CTO) at EOS. “The industrial 3D printing technology offered by EOS plays a key role in this field, as it gives customers a completely new degree of freedom in terms of part design and production. Therefore the technology is being increasingly used in serial production.” He continues: “The next step is to meaningfully integrate industrial 3D printing in both existing as well as future manufacturing environments and at the same time continually optimize part and data flows in serial production. In other words, it’s all about the digital connectivity of conventional and additive technologies. With MindSphere World we are able to collaborate with the right companies to promote this development.”
Industrial grade connectivity
EOS is working steadily to ensure that its solutions can be connected with MES/ERP applications and, with the help of EOSCONNECT combined with MindSphere, also be able to support new digital marketplaces as well as IoT platforms. This high connectivity enables two beneficial outcomes: companies gain a seamless handover of production data into their CAQ systems (Computer Aided Quality) for a secure and reliable traceability, helping them to validate their processes for production. They also can benefit from transparency with visualization and readout of real-time production KPIs. Ultimately, this type of comprehensive connectivity helps companies to boost their productivity.