From 1st to 5th April 2019 the biggest German industrial show, the Hannover Traidefair, took place . Many key technologies and core industries have been in one place — from research and development, industrial automation and IT to subcontracting, production technologies and services, to energy and mobility technologies.
The interplay between automation and energy technology, intralogistics, IT platforms and artificial intelligence is driving the digital transformation of the industry forward. With this year’s theme “Integrated Industry — Industrial Intelligence”, the Hannover Fair wanted to illustrate the potential of this development.
My discussions showed that the topics are manifold. The diverse exhibitors show that the networking of people, machines and data is promoted through common platforms, where they exchange and increase their knowledge. The role of man is that of „Enabler“. The production of tomorrow can not do without his process knowledge and his diverse qualifications. Data collection, data analysis, machine learning or the development of artificial intelligence algorithms is what makes human beings possible. For this reason, Industrial Intelligence also stands for the expansion of knowledge management and the training of knowledge carriers.
I was at the fair on the 3rd of April and had an exciting day with lots of talks and discussions. I faced 6,500 exhibitors, such a big number that you have to set priorities in any case, otherwise you go under. My focus at the show was on the Internet of Things (IOT), but I found that of the large number of exhibitors, most of them had something to do with the IOT and wanted to benefit from it. In addition to the large number of dominant vendors such as microsoft, there were also an infinite number of smaller vendors and exhibitors who dealt with the IOT. And there were also exhibitors who dealt with IOTA and the Tangle technology. But to brake the euphoria, there were only 4 exhibitors with smaller applications: Topocare, Fujitsu, eC@ss and e-shelter. That’s a number in the per thousand range. Of course I visited these exhibitors and discussed the real use cases with them. In a nutshell, I report on what was shown:
- eCl@ss : The eCl@ss demonstrator is a set of precise sensors. One of them measuring the distance to an object and categorized through a specific, unique, standardized ID. Any measured distance is being immutably recorded as a data point on the Tangle. From that point, it is easily audible and can be purchased through a micro transaction. In conjunction with eCl@ss, the IOTA Tangle offers a clear and standardized description for IoT devices and products, meaning that IOTA and eCl@ss can be used together for any industry transaction.
- Topocare: Topocare shows how creative thinking and always challenging the status quo can lead to humanitarian improvements and catastrophe remediation or even prevention. This is all while utilizing a modern pay-as-you-use model for financial settlements. Generated monitoring data of the dike or levee are directly insert into the tangle. So there is no way of being manipulated form that time on. This assurance is a key argument for the product “monitoring”. The more IoT-devices are in place the more important this becomes. Especially for critical infrastructure.
- Fujitsu: Fujitsu was showing the latest version of its Industry 4.0 showcase, to demonstrate how component tracking and processing of data as part of supply chain management can be combined with distributed ledger technology.
- e-shelter and IAMPASS: e-shelter develops and runs high availability data centers, and is a strong promoter of innovation. This mindset is in deep consensus with IAMPASS, which is providing identity and access management services on top of IOTA’s Tangle.
These are all great companies with passion and courage to innovate. It was also very clear here that individual commitment is a really important factor for realising such great projects.
But that should not fool the fact that a large number of exhibitors have never heard of IOTA, or intend to create applications with IOTA. The discussions that I have conducted have shown that many companies have so far moved towards digitization and the path to Industry 4.0, and that is for many companies new territory, in which much remains unclear.