European project ConnectedFactories

Industrial scenarios for connected factories

The ‘Digitisation of manufacturing’, including concepts like Cyber Physical Systems (CPS), Industrial Internet and the Internet of Things (IoT), connects people, devices, machines and enterprises like never before. It transforms industry so dramatically that it is considered as the 4th industrial revolution (Industrie 4.0). There have been a number of regional, national and European initiatives targeting these developments. However, the connections between these initiatives are rather weak, and in consequence this fragmentation hinders the development of a common vision for Europe regarding the digitisation of manufacturing and its implementation.

ConnectedFactories aimed at de-fragmenting these existing initiatives, and contributing to the drive forward to implement digital solutions in practice. Therefore, the project’s key objectives were:

  • Support industrial consensus building both with suppliers and users across Europe regarding future factory automation systems built on CPS and the IoT
  • Assist pan-European platform building
  • Foster collaboration on manufacturing issues across all relevant PPPs

To achieve these objectives, the project has documented the supply side of existing technologies, and analysed the demand side by conducting workshops with manufacturers, machine builders, integrators and end-users. To gain a comprehensive overview of existing efforts, these have been analysed and mapped. With this information, scenarios have been developed about how different platforms and architectures could potentially co-exist, cooperate and compete. Throughout the project, the partners will ensure that the crucial issues of standardisation, security, liability and social aspects are adequately addressed. Furthermore, activities have been conducted which explicitly aim at creating links with PPPs or programmes and disseminate the findings from the project. This will further strengthen a unified European approach in this field.

Steinbeis 2i was responsible for the analysis of the demand side, especially challenges and user needs. S2i was also contributing to the dissemination of project results as well as the analysis of scenarios.

ConnectedFactories was a 'Coordination and Support' action of the European Commission in the area of ‘Factories of the Future’, with a consortium of 16 members from 10 countries.

Funding: European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 723777.

Project duration: 09/2016 - 08/2019

Participating Countries: Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden, Spain

Portrait Meike Reimann
Dr. Meike Reimann
0721 935191 19
Portrait Victoria Blessing
Dr. Victoria Blessing
0711 123 40 51