Better, more reliable, more environmentally friendly: Industry 4.0 in action at BENTELER
Salzburg/Paderborn, May 18, 2021. It’s been ten years since German Chancellor Angela Merkel brought mainstream attention to Industry 4.0 for the first time. On this anniversary, the global company BENTELER is providing insights into how digitalization and Big Data are modernizing production and the working environment in industry. “Digital transformation is changing our world. In the long term, only those who grasp this change openly, actively and courageously will be successful. That’s exactly what BENTELER is doing,” says Cordt Erfling, Director Process Engineering at BENTELER Automotive.
The start of Industry 4.0 at BENTELER
At BENTELER, Industry 4.0 began in the basement. To be more specific, in the basement of the automotive plant in Paderborn, Germany. Here, a conveyor line ensures that scrap accumulated on the ground floor during production is transported away quickly. In the past, if a part became jammed, it could cause the scrap conveyor to fail. Today, the system registers when the motor current increases. Within seconds, a corresponding warning is sent via push message to a technician who can then react immediately. Since then, the conveyor has never failed – thanks to digitalization.
5% higher equipment efficiency thanks to Big Data
As part of the Boost 4.0 project, BENTELER, together with the internationally renowned Fraunhofer Institute, has developed a model for predictive maintenance of machines. This ensures that machines are serviced exactly when necessary – before problems arise. Furthermore, as a direct benefit, the model increased the overall equipment efficiency by 5%. The next step is to transfer the project results to all BENTELER plants worldwide.
Greater sustainability through data analysis
With hot forming ovens, even small leaks in the insulation mean higher energy consumption. At the automotive plant in Burgos, Spain, the metal processing specialist uses complex data analysis to check whether the insulation is intact. As a result, BENTELER is reducing unnecessary energy losses, conserving resources and contributing to sustainability.
Facts and figures on which infrastructure is needed for the digitalization of a plant, as well as other Big Data applications are available on a specially created Industry 4.0 website. This includes practical examples of quality control and innovations, for example in the area of production processes and can be found at: www.benteler.com/industry-40.
“We are taking advantage of new opportunities with digitalization and increasingly relying on IoT solutions to gradually transform production. With our focus on Industry 4.0 and Big Data applications, we are increasing our reliability, efficiency and also sustainability,” emphasizes Cordt Erfling: “We all benefit from this – our customers, our employees and nature.”