On 14 and 15 November 2023, the Luxembourg Digital Innovation Hub organized a special edition of the DIH ON TOUR to Nurnberg and Amberg in Germany. The two-day tour was a great opportunity for industry players and digital enthusiasts to discover the latest advancements and breakthroughs in the world of industrial automation and digital transformation. Various people representing production companies, solution providers, research and other institutions from the Luxembourgish manufacturing ecosystem joined the tour.

The programme for this study trip included a visit to the Smart Production Solutions (SPS) fair in Nuremberg where participants could gain a deeper understanding of market forces in the electric automation sector and discover what’s new in the value chain from automatic solutions to complete systems. With its unique concept, the SPS fair 2023 covered the entire spectrum of smart and digital automation – from simple sensors to intelligent solutions, from what is feasible today to the vision of a fully digitalized industrial world. Visitors had access to cutting-edge innovations in drive systems and components, peripheral equipment, Interface technology, sensor technology, control technology, industrial software and communication and mechanical infrastructure.

The SPS fair was really interesting and delivering on the expectation on Smart Production Solutions, 16 large fair halls filled with concepts, technology and solutions driving digitalization. All global market leaders up to specialized enablers were presenting innovative products and solutions for the world of automation in industry and manufacturing. In addition to the classic automation topics of control technology, drive technology, and sensor technology, software & IT is becoming an increasingly important issue in manufacturing. As a result, attention is increasingly turning to the use of artificial intelligence and IT security in the automation world.

With 1.200 exhibitors this year, the SPS fair was surely too much for a day visit, but sufficient to get inspired on latest technology trends or finding concrete solutions for industry challenges.

On the second day of this special DIH tour, the participants went for a visit of THE IMPULSE Amberg, the newly built Siemens visitor center in Amberg which combines a Showcase and Experience Center as well as a Science Lab under one roof. In the digital factory in Amberg, Siemens produces precision products such as programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and human-machine interfaces. It is a world-class digital factory, pioneering digitisation initiatives to increase efficiency and shorten time-to-market.

In fact, without having enlarged its production area (10,000 m²)
and with almost no change in personnel, the plant has increased its production capacity thirteen-fold since it opened in 1989. These efficiency gains have also increased production flexibility, enabling the plant to manufacture more than 1,000 product variants a day and one product every second.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) has named the Siemens Electronic Works in Amberg as Sustainability Lighthouse. The designation acknowledges its proactive approach to drive the future of sustainable manufacturing with energy and resource-efficient operations.

The tour of this very specific visitor center was truly impressive and showed how Siemens is responding to the challenges of more flexible production combined with continuous high efficiency, quality improvement, managing a large number of different products and their variations.

Apart from the 2 inspiring and interesting visits, this special DIH on Tour was a good opportunity for networking and exchange of experiences between the different participants.

Les auteurs
Georges Santer
Responsable digitalisation et innovation auprès de la FEDIL