Digitization at Harro Höfliger
Digital solutions combine Harro Höfliger's expertise in operating machines with the knowledge of pharmaceutical and medical technology manufacturing processes. We use digital concepts to create added value for our customers. Numerous experts work intensively on the integration of digital solutions which, among other things, increase the quality, transparency and efficiency of industrial processes and thus make an outstanding contribution to production reliability.
Naturally, these intelligent systems can be operated intuitively via standardized interfaces. Not least, we use digitization and the synergies of Industry 4.0 by optimizing internal engineering with methods such as Deep Learning in image processing and virtual commissioning - so that you benefit from fast, efficient and reliable solutions.
Our digital solutions create transparency and thus the basis for making your processes easier and more efficient. We rely on IoT technologies that enable comprehensive monitoring, evaluation and optimization of your work processes. You are given clear and reliable information on the status of your machines and the associated processes.
Digital solutions contribute to high data security and machine availability. Risks and influences are reduced to a minimum by the automatic detection of fault locations in the system. The digitized workflow provides a clear overview of the system status.
The networking of machines, services and software via IoT platforms opens up totally new possibilities for your production processes. Based on data science and extensive expertise, we use validatable software solutions that help optimize your production processes.
Maintenance Manager simplifies and optimizes the maintenance of your machinery: The application enables you to create and manage maintenance plans for different machines in a flexible and easy way.
How does digitization change machine engineering?
As a result of increasing networking, the production environment is becoming ever more complex - machines also place increasingly higher demands on operators. We have to take this pressure off our customers by designing our systems in such a way that they are easier to operate. To this end, we rely, for example, on HMI systems with high usability and augmented-reality supported services that enable operators to retrofit a machine. Furthermore, digital approaches are also used to optimize our internal engineering processes.
Can you give us an example?
For quite some time now we have been relying on the virtual commissioning of our machines. The focus here is on mechatronic units where risks must be considered in advance or which present us with particular challenges. With the help of a digital twin for these "critical" units, we can ensure at a very early stage in development that the unit works. This saves time and money – and ultimately means great benefits for our customers.
Does Harro Höfliger, as a manufacturer of speciality machines, face particular challenges in the digital field?
The concepts developed in specialty machine engineering cannot simply be transferred from one machine to another. Therefore, maintaining and ensuring that digital solutions are up-to-date is particularly challenging in this area. Among other things, we therefore attach great importance to collaborative processes: Not only are specialists needed to make their knowledge available, but every user can record actions once they have been performed and enter them into knowledge databases.
What role does digitization play in the training period?
For years we have been working intensively with universities and have gained many valuable suggestions and impulses as a result of their efforts. One thesis, for example, dealt with the development of virtual assistants, such as voice-controlled chat bots, to support machine operation - one of many exciting topics which we will continue to pursue.