On the way to Industry 5.0?

BAG Analytics GmbH was founded in spring 2022 with the vision, all data generated in a company from production, administration, Collect and evaluate laboratory and storage in one place. goals are not only the improvement of process efficiency and process reliability, but also the saving of resources.
The analysis after two years shows: There is a need for such a solution is here and is even growing increasingly, because the new dimension of “sustainability” and the technical possibilities such as AI are drivers for profound Change – in all industries.

In the following, however, the focus will be on surface technology.

Initial situation laws

The European Green Deal stipulates that the European Union as first continent to become climate neutral in 2050. A key tool for Promoting the circular economy should be the digital product pass. This should already happen in some sectors such as batteries, electronics or plastics to be implemented from 2027, in other areas only from 2030.

The internationally recognized standard Greenhouse Gas Protocol and the ESRS E1 Climate Change of the CSRD reporting share the climate-damaging ones Greenhouse gases are divided into 3 categories: Scope 1, 2 and 3. These quantify the direct and indirect emissions in the value chain of a product and ensure that the emissions of those involved in production Companies are not recorded twice.

The annual obligation to provide evidence of sustainable corporate management in the form of ESG reporting (environmental, social and governance) brings all companies Coming soon: Large companies with more than 250 employees from 2025, SMEs from 2026. Small companies are not subject to this obligation, however They are asked to follow ESG reporting.

In order to achieve these climate goals, the EU taxonomy regulation provides for the Directing investments in sustainable projects and activities: The procurement of capital is supported for companies that operate sustainably and in an environmentally friendly manner.

In addition to other constraints such as raw material shortages and rising inflation Prices for resources will lead to the above regulations in the near future to quantify their emissions and resources. The companies have have recognized that there is no way around digitalization set off. Today there is already a lot of data in a company recorded and stored. But are these also evaluated and used for decisions?

Initial situation of digitalization

A survey conducted by BAG in June 2023 among 127 galvanic Companies of different sizes regarding the status of digitalization at that time resulted in the following:

    Some operational areas have already been digitized, while others have not yet. The degree of digitalization often depends on the size of the company away. All companies surveyed control their order planning via an ERP system (Enterprise Resource Planning System) and have their administration largely digitized, whereas wastewater pretreatment is hardly digitized is. The laboratory and warehouse areas are digitalized at SMEs However, not small and large companies. The areas of production and logistics are ideally suited to digital representation by large corporations.

    Overall, large and medium-sized companies appear to be better positioned to be like small businesses. It is estimated that this one is better As a small company, you have access to the resource “know-how in the area of ​​digitalization”.

    The general hurdles on the way to digitalization are complexity of technology, resistance to change and the integration of existing systems.

    Aware that digitalization is an important tool in... Order and product tracking represents process security However, it is also perceived that they are faced with a shortage of skilled workers in many areas of the company. But actually standing the sustainability and climate goals are far down on the list Expectations for digitalization – as of mid-2023.

    Most companies plan to implement digitalization for a period of max. 1-2 years. Within 5 years everyone wants to Companies have largely completed the process. Similar Periods are specified for the use of the digital tools. Interesting What is striking, however, is that there is a discrepancy between the planned Use and implementation period of digitalization: The estimated The period of their use within 1-2 years is 15% higher than that of theirs Implementation. There is also a deviation for the longer periods desired use until implementation.

Recognize and close the gap

The discrepancy between the assessment of the use and implementation of digitisation shows that companies have great planning uncertainty in this area. They also lack a roadmap, a concept for implementing digitisation.

The market currently does not provide a universal solution for all companies, because ready-made software does not take into account the individual requirements of the respective company.

The basic idea of ​​BAG Analytics is to have everything existing digital data from the various operational areas in one to network with each other using an intelligent data platform. There will be interfaces for the digital capture of analogue data, so that data from all relevant operational areas can be linked and brought into context.

This cumulative data provides information for decisions different perspectives: quality management, laboratory analysis, Dosing technology, resource and environmental management. They provide the KPIs for the upper management, concrete work instructions for the workers at the System or can control processes fully automatically, for example pumps for re-dosing.

A core part of this is the evaluation of the data by specialists be defined and stored in the system. The decision-making authority Humans are currently still responsible for evaluating the data situation.

The implementation of this global idea has been completed within the last two years the programming of the data platform ASAP “Analyzing System for Automated Processes” is well advanced and is currently undergoing practical testing 2 electroplating shops. It is constantly being refined. ASAP has a modular structure and is tailored to the individual needs of the company.

Since the company was founded, there have been many discussions in the industry Workshops on the topic of digitalization were held. As a result has It turns out that such a solution, which ASAP offers with data networking, many companies are waiting. Data backup in Germany is also very important.

Are you still working on Industry 4.0 or have you already arrived at Industry 5.0?

According to the definition, Industry 4.0 refers to projects for comprehensive digitalization of industrial production and includes cyber-physical systems, the Internet of things, information and communication networks.

Certainly there are only a small, manageable number of companies that are already have arrived there according to the definition above, but everyone is on the way there. In the meantime, legal requirements are becoming more urgent and so is AI is finding its way into everyday life and industrial production. First voices are already talking about the next industrial revolution and Industry 5.0.

However, despite all the digitalization and automation of processes, The most important factor should not disappear from view: people.

Authors: Dr. Elke Spahn, Johannes Spahn, Frank Benner and Sigrid Frey