The changing framework conditions in the economy and society, among other things, driven by the increasing digitalization and networking, require a sustainable change in production and the working environment. Modern information and communication systems closely interlinked with production provide for new intelligent and digitally networked systems through to the intelligent factory.
These technologies provide for the scope of direct communication and cooperation between people, machines, plants, logistics and production within the digitally networked systems. In addition, all phases of the product lifecycle are included, starting with the idea and development, through the manufacturing, use and maintenance, through to the recycling of the product and the services associated with the cycle.
Despite the individualized production, production costs can be reduced. While classic production steps have been optimised, the focus is now placed on optimising the entire value chain through the system networking. In addition, the presence of the information in real time ensures e.g. an early reaction to the scarcity of a raw material. Overall, the objectives, which are summarised as "Industry 4.0", focus on increasing the profitability of production, strengthening the economic location and the competitiveness of German industry, as well as increasing flexibility in production. For more than 15 years now, IMA has been dealing with customer-specific production up to flexible mass production and the associated systems for the integration into continuous production concepts. Digital as well as technically networked complete systems with the highest productivity with smallest batch sizes have always been our core discipline. In addition, we are working on ongoing projects, for example, the BMBF top clusters "Intelligent technical systems of Ostwestfalen-Lippe" ("it's OWL"), for the further development and standardisation of the platform industry 4.0.