IKV A smart factory on Campus Melaten brings research together under one roof
Germany – The Institute for Plastics Processing (IKV) in Industry and Craft at RWTH Aachen University has announced the approval for further construction at the IKV site in Aachen Melaten.
IKV announced that it got the approval for further construction at the IKV site in Aachen Melaten end of December last year. The Plastics Innovation Centre 4.0 (PIC 4.0) to be built at Seffenter Weg will be a completely interconnected R&D environment occupying 4,200 sq.m. and completed in 2022.
The project, costing 19.5 million euros, will be funded by the North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) state and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). A holistic approach that covers both R&D and the qualification of companies and employees in the field of digitisation in plastics processing, IKV aims to become a world-leading Industry 4.0 centre for the plastics industry.
The project will begin with preparatory R&D work to fully interconnect the existing research infrastructure and will have full documentation of the assembly of a smart factory. The accompanying development of learning and teaching concepts will ensure the transfer of research results into university teaching and industrial practice, enabling future skilled workers to become qualified in the field of Plastics Industry 4.0, which will increase the economic strength of the industry in NRW.
During construction and later in the course of the research, scientists involved in PIC 4.0 will devise solutions on comprehensive process data acquisition and processing along complex value chains in plastics processing. Through digital engineering, the development of the plastic part and the process technology will be simulated virtually with the help of uninterrupted simulation chains, from initial specifications to the finished part.
The integrated research infrastructure will also serve as testing environment for future developments within the Cluster of Excellence “Internet of Production” of RWTH Aachen University. In this context, PIC 4.0 offers support with specific technical and organisational issues from daily practices in the plastics industry that are linked with digitised processes. At the same time, innovative digitisation technologies and approaches can be tested so that even abstract concepts and reference architectures of the industry can be tried out and their potential benefits determined. The PIC 4.0 will bring all the fields of IKV research together on one site.