The fully integrated MTCS-CDCAF sensor chip solution: Guarantees defined light
MAZeT GmbH, the development and manufacturing services provider for embedded systems and optoelectronics, will be presenting its latest light regulation products at this year’s SENSOR + TEST. This international trade fair is being held from 10 to 12 May 2016 in Nuremberg; MAZeT GmbH will be located at Booth 457 in Hall 1. MAZeT will also be presenting its latest sensors at LightFair International from 24 to 28 April 2016 in San Diego, USA at Booth 2653 operated by AVNET Electronics Marketing. The highlight is the new MTCS-CDCAF color sensor: The first fully integrated sensor chip in the JENCOLOR® product line includes a true-color filter function, integrated signal amplification based on charge-to-digital conversion, and an on-chip temperature sensor. The sensor combines the functions of the JENCOLOR® MTCSiCF detector and the MCDC04 digital signal converter in a minimized form and has been perfectly adapted to the specific requirements of lighting applications. The possible areas of application are diverse. In addition to LED lights, the sensor can also be used in LED backlight systems for monitors, in all areas of architectural lighting, in vehicles and aircraft, and in medical and technical lighting and displays. MAZeT will soon be offering accessory boards to complement the MTCS-CDCAF color sensor.
LED measurement and regulation: direct, rapid, precise, and temperature-independent
The sensor measures the color coordinates of light as XYZ signals in the CIE 1931 color space directly, rapidly, precisely, and regardless of temperature or other interference factors. Unlike conventional absorption filters, the sensor operates using interference filters that allow it to function reliably at temperatures of over 100°C and maintain its sensitivity through its entire lifecycle. In addition to color temperature and chromaticity, the sensor measures brightness and other light-related parameters such as color brightness, frequency, and flicker. The MTCS-CDCAF is available in a QFN16 package and is also suitable for direct installation in lights. Compared to conventional RGB color sensors, the MTCS-CDCAF’s unique properties make it ideal for use in lighting applications; these properties include its extended temperature range, its filters based on the tri-stimulus value function (CIE 1931), and the expanded parameters of the on-chip ADC. In that sense, it is ideally suited to measuring and regulating LEDs to compensate for interference factors that would result in color deviations in the LED light. The sensor guarantees defined, consistent LED light.
MAZeT GmbH is a leading European engineering and manufacturing service provider. The company was founded in 1992 and is based in Jena. MAZeT develops, manufactures and distributes customer specific devices, software and ASICs distributes own products of the trademark JENCOLOR®. The broad technology offer and application know-how in this field of industry electronics and opto-sensor technology lets MAZeT GmbH be a competent and reliable service partner for every customized client-specific solution. Their expertise and components for custom applications are used throughout the entire sector of industrial metrology, control and automation as well as medical technology.
Representatives of Plattform Industrie 4.0 and the Industrial Internet Consortium met in Zurich, Switzerland to explore the potential alignment of their two architecture efforts – respectively, the Reference Architecture Model for Industrie 4.0 (RAMI4.0) and the Industrial Internet Reference Architecture (IIRA). The meeting was a success, with a common recognition of the complementary nature of the two models, an initial draft mapping showing the direct relationships between elements of the models, and a clear roadmap to ensure future interoperability. Additional possible topics included collaboration in the areas of IIC Testbeds and I4.0 Test Facility Infrastructures, as well as standardization, architectures & business outcomes in the Industrial Internet.
State Secretary, Matthias Machnig, Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy: “We welcome the cooperation of both initiatives as an important milestone in the cooperation of companies internationally. The combined strengths of both IIC and Plattform Industrie 4.0 will substantially help to pave the way for a mutually beneficial development of a digitized economy for our international businesses.”
Prof. Dr. Siegfried Russwurm, Technical Director of Plattform Industrie 4.0, CTO and Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG, said „Collaborating with other initiatives is important, especially for Germany’s export-oriented economy. We are highly interested to cooperate intensively with others in order to pave the way for global standards. Cooperating with IIC – and with other consortia – is an important step in the right direction.”
Dr. Richard Mark Soley, Executive Director of the Industrial Internet Consortium, commented, “The effort shows that smart technical people can bridge any gap and find a way to solve problems that might otherwise have created barriers to entry in the adoption of IoT technology for industrial applications. I applaud the participants and thank them for their initial work, and look forward to a successful collaboration moving forward.”
Dr. Werner Struth, member of the Bosch board of management: “This is a huge accomplishment for industry adoption of the Industrial Internet of Things, as it will simplify technology choices immensely and lead to greatly enhanced interoperability.”
Bernd Leukert, Member of the SAP Executive Board emphasizes the importance of alignment between IIC and Plattform Industrie 4.0-initiated testbed initiatives: “This will allow for a much smoother international cooperation between smaller companies and larger enterprise to test out use cases and to initiate standards.”
Greg Petroff, Chief Experience Officer for GE Digital, said: “Breaking down the barriers of technology silos and supporting better integration of these architectures efforts will be key to advancing the Industrial Internet. This collaboration will help build a vibrant, united community around standards that drive integration toward solving the world’s toughest challenges.”
Robert Martin, Senior Principal Engineer in Cyber Security Partnership, The MITRE Corporation and member of the IIC Steering Committee, said “Bringing together the work of the Industrial Internet Consortium and the Plattform Industrie 4.0 Konsortium will dramatically increase the international value of both efforts and help to clarify and resolve the problems and concerns facing the global Industrial IoT marketplace quicker and more effectively than either could do alone.”
“I‘m excited to see the two premier Industrial Internet of Things organizations aligning their efforts,” states Stan Schneider, CEO of Real-Time Innovations (RTI) and a member of the IIC Steering Committee. “Industrie 4.0’s strong foundation in industrial manufacturing and process combines well with the IIC’s emphasis on emerging IIoT applications in healthcare, transportation, power, and smart cities. We are working aggressively to align the connectivity infrastructures of the underlying DDS and OPC UA connectivity standards. We look forward to driving the rapid growth of the IIoT across all industries.”
The Zurich meeting was originally proposed by Bosch and SAP as members of the steering committees of both organizations. The meeting constituted an informal group which will continue their work on exploring potential alignment between I4.0 and IIC. The open, informal discovery group included Bosch, Cisco, IIC, Pepperl + Fuchs, SAP, Siemens, Steinbeis Institute and ThingsWise.
For more information on the Industrial Internet Consortium, please visit http://www.iiconsortium.org or contact Kathy Walsh, Industrial Internet Consortium Director of Marketing at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the Plattform Industrie 4.0, please contact Henning Banthien, Plattform Industrie 4.0 Secretary General at email@example.com.
SugarCRM Inc., the company that enables businesses to create extraordinary customer relationships with the most innovative, flexible and affordable CRM solution on the market, announced today it has acquired the intellectual property rights and other assets of Contastic, a natural language processing (NLP) platform that is designed to automatically recommend the best content for individuals to send to their contacts.
Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Cy Khormaee, Contastic’s CEO, has joined SugarCRM as the director of product management for predictive analytics, where he’ll help build technology into Sugar that turns customer data into actionable recommendations for Sugar users.
“SugarCRM is making strategic investments in leading technologies to make Sugar an indispensable tool that helps customer-facing individuals be more successful,” said Larry Augustin, CEO of SugarCRM. “SugarCRM will use Contastic’s NLP technology to analyze data within the Sugar platform so users can automatically send personalized content.”
In March 2015, SugarCRM acquired the assets of Stitch, a leading developer of personal assistant technologies that enhance productivity for mobile users. Incorporating Stitch Hot House Labs technology made Sugar an even smarter, better-informed CRM system, and put information at mobile users’ fingertips no matter their location. In 2014, SugarCRM acquired business process management and workflow technology from ProcessMaker. With ProcessMaker’s key assets, SugarCRM built Advanced Workflow into Sugar 7.6, which enables users to automate complex business processes like case routing and escalation, contract approval, customer and employee onboarding, and payment workflow.
Mountain View-based Contastic applies deep NLP to mine topics of interest from conversations in email and CRM. These topics are used to recommend content that is relevant to the most salient points of conversations between users and their contacts. The company’s investors include Lightspeed Ventures and IDG-Accel.
Future releases of Sugar will be enhanced with Contastic capabilities, making the Sugar platform even more intelligent in recommending the next best actions derived from customer data.
SugarCRM enables businesses to create extraordinary customer relationships with the most innovative, flexible and affordable customer relationship management (CRM) solution on the market. Unlike traditional CRM solutions that focus primarily on management and reporting, Sugar empowers the individual, coordinating the actions of customer-facing employees and equipping them with the right information at the right time to transform the customer experience. Based in Silicon Valley, SugarCRM is backed by Goldman Sachs, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, NEA and Walden International. More than 1.5 million individuals in over 120 countries rely on SugarCRM. To learn more visit SugarCRM or follow @SugarCRM.
The Future of Resource Efficiency DBU Environmental Prize Recipient: Sorted Recycling Through Laser Technology
Of the approximately 4.8 million tons of plastic waste – from household garbage, electronic scrap and old cars – which accumulate in Germany annually, some one-third is mechanically recycled. This does not apply, however, for so-called black plastics. Presently these cannot be sufficiently well sorted and must be, by and large, used to produce energy. The use of black plastics is particularly widespread in the automobile industry, small electrical appliances, and in the packaging industry, and continues to increase. Currently in Germany alone, about 1,000,000 tons of plastic-rich waste from the automobile industry has accumulated, and an additional 400,000 tons from electrical- and electronic devices (EAG).
Definitive material characterization of the recycling material is crucial for successful and efficient recycling. The innovative analysis technology from UNISENSOR Sensor Systems GmbH (Karlsruhe) opens up completely new possibilities for the recycling of metals and plastics, and enables the sustainable recovery of important raw materials. A sorting system based on laser spectroscopy separates even synthetics which were previously not separable with the greatest precision and speed. The plastics are ground into flakes, analyzed in the newly-developed Powersort 360 system through laser spectroscopy, and are sorted using special compressed air nozzles. In this manner both black and dark plastics can be distinctly identified based on their “physical fingerprint” – that is, their optical spectrum – and sorted by type. In particular, polymer polystyrene (PS), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), and blends of polycarbonate (PC) and ABS can be efficiently and economically recovered.
Further information at http://www.unisensor.de
The industrial micro manufacturing is changing! The trend is moving away from the one-dimensional mass production to an increasing variety of products coupled with falling numbers and shorter innovation cycles. Today’s ultra-precision machines are rarely operated economically under these conditions. Here, in micro manufacturing the demand rises for new, size-adjusted machine tools that operate more economical and ecological than before. These needs can be derived from a consideration of simple parameters, such as the installation space, size of the working space and need for operating power or the moving masses of machine tools. These parameters are in considerable disproportion to the volume or mass of small workpieces of only few millimeters with structures in micrometer range.
This is where a completely new concept of industrial micro production is set, which was developed in the Priority Program SPP 1476 ”small machine tools for small workpieces” funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). Under the coordination of Institute of Production Engineering (LaFT) of Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg, 18 leading production technology institutions of various German universities investigated on new machine tools for micro production.
The idea of the SPP: We make the machines so small, light and flexible, as they can be to be rebuilt and converted for changing needs in shortest times. Therefore the machine tools are introduced and positioned to the workpiece depending on the machining task – and not vice versa as before. What is new is that their work space can interfere with the space section of the workpiece. This allows multiple machines to work simultaneously on a workpiece and, as required, placed flexible side by side, one above the other or in a row. Nevertheless, the technology works accurately and precisely.
Just like a Lego game, companies can respond to changing ideas, processing technologies and requirements at any time. If new parts are needed, they can be easily attached to the machine via multifunctional interface. So an ad hoc change between micro tool spindles, laser processing optics or EDM electrodes is possible. The control operates via a laptop or PC. It also followed by the idea of Open Production – the user community constantly develops the system further. The advantage of this completely new technology: it not only saves time, resources and space, it uses a worker more targeted and effective. The first prototypes are developed. With mass production of such a machine, costs drop down to just under a fifth of conventional production systems.
The aim of the Priority Program is the development and prototype testing of scientific methods for building new machine tools for micro production, which are adapted to characteristic technological and technical parameters of the corresponding micro workpiece. In the Priority Program the main focus is on machine tools for material removal process utilising mechanical (machining), thermal (laser), electro thermal (electrical discharge machining) and electrochemical energy. These new machines have technical, economic and ecological benefits. They enable production of complex parts with higher accuracy from a large range of materials and are also characterised by a higher inherent variability in structure and location of the installation site. Economic and ecological advantages are realised by low costs and lower consumption of resources for the development and operation of the machine. In particular, steep improvements of the mentioned properties are achieved by bringing down the critical size of the developed manufacturing equipment.
After falling below a certain size, small machine tools enable the introduction of new or known but still unused machine tool technologies and elements. As opposed to today’s evolutionary development of the machines, these technologies enable innovative leaps, i.e., revolutionary steps in the development and operation of the machines.
At the Hanover Fair desktop-size machine tools are presented, which were composed in exemplary configurations of the newly developed tool, feed and additional modules. The modules have been designed so that different machine tools can be assembled and disassembled ad hoc and task oriented from the mentioned modules.
Sector sets another record for production output in 2015
For 2016, the German machine tool industry is cautiously optimistic. “We’re expecting moderate growth of 1 per cent in 2016,” says Dr. Heinz-Jürgen Prokop, Chairman of the VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Association), speaking at the organisation’s annual press conference in Frankfurt am Main.
This prognosis is based on capital investment from the major customer sectors, global figures for machine tool consumption, and finally the order bookings at Germany’s machine tool manufacturers.
For the investments, Oxford Economics, the VDW’s forecasting partner, was in the autumn of last year expecting a global increase of 4 per cent. The principal drivers are traditionally the automotive industry, followed by the electrical engineering and electronics industries, metal product manufacturers, and the mechanical engineering sector. Machine tool consumption is predicted to rise by 4.2 per cent. Europe tops the rankings here (plus 4.6 per cent), closely followed by Asia (plus 4.5 per cent) and America (plus 2.5 per cent).
Order bookings at German machine tool manufacturers, an indicator for medium-term business activity, showed a moderate rise of 1 per cent in 2015, to reach 14.9 billion euros. Production output and order bookings are thus settling at approximately the same level.
During the first three quarters of 2015 Asia and Europe ordered 4 and 3 per cent more German machine tools respectively than in the previous year. Orders from China, which account for around a quarter of the total, were down again, this time by 8 per cent. This shows that the restructuring process in the Middle Kingdom will remain an issue for quite a long time to come. Nonetheless China remains important due to the sheer size of its market alone – the country is responsible for one-third of international machine tool consumption.
In 2015, the sector produced machines worth 15.1 billion euros
The VDW’S prognosis is based on the record year of 2015. Last year, the German machine tool industry produced machines worth 15.1 billion euros, corresponding to an increase of 4 per cent. “That’s once again a record figure, following the last high in 2013,” explains Dr. Prokop.
With an export ratio of around 70 per cent, and exports up by 4 per cent to around 9.4 billion euros, markets abroad made a somewhat greater contribution to the overall result than domestic consumption. Contrary to all expectations, Europe did particularly well, with a plus of 8 per cent.
Asia, by contrast, a few years ago on almost level pegging with Europe, disappointed with a fall in exports of 5 per cent. China, the largest market with a share of still over one-fifth, has been severely affected.
In 2015, the sector’s workforce increased by an annual average of 1.5 per cent to around 68,500 employees. Capacity utilisation was running at an annual average of just over 88 per cent, which was about 2 per cent down on the preceding year’s level. The current figure in January, however, shows a renewed uptrend. The order backlog, at 6.8 months, was averaging half a month below the preceding year’s figure.
“Overall, these figures show the sector has once again performed very well. Some of our member companies have reported the best year in the firm’s history,” is Dr. Prokop’s comment on the figures for 2015.
Global business is getting progressively harder
“Nonetheless, the business environment for our operations has become more difficult, and our options for exerting a direct influence are limited,” says Prokop. The newly industrialising countries, in particular, are under pressure, due to the low prices for raw materials, Russia is suffering from the weak rouble and the low oil price, Brazil is mired in a serious recession, while China, with its faltering growth is weakening the most important trading partners. Then there are the numerous geopolitical uncertainties. “So it’s all the more important for our companies, in time of transformative global change, to be on the lookout for new long-term market potentials,” says Dr. Prokop. This applies both to new sales markets, and to new products and services from the manufacturers.
Market potentials for German machine tool manufacturers
Iran, currently on everyone’s lips, offers potentials for German manufactures as well. In the boom times of the early 1990s, they exported machines worth almost 190 million euros. The figure for last year, by contrast, was a mere 20 million euros. The country’s machine tool consumption is expected to increase rapidly from its most recent 82 million. In particular, German vendors are anticipating good sales opportunities thanks to a very substantial demand for modernization among equipment suppliers for the oil and gas industries, and in the automaking segment. In order to reconnect with the traditionally good relationships with Iranian customers, VDW is joining forces with Messe Stuttgart to host the AMB Iran, a trade fair with an accompanying symposium, in Teheran from 30 May to 1 June 2016.
Mexico is also regarded as an exciting high-growth market, driven predominantly by the automotive and aviation industries Mexico’s machine tool consumption rose by an impressive 85 per cent between 2010 and 2014. With 1.5 billion euros, the country nowadays ranks among the world’s biggest markets for machine tools. Germany is the third-biggest supplier, with a share of 14 per cent. German exports have since 2011 climbed by more than 250 per cent. In mid-April 2016, on the initiative of the VDW and with political support, there will be a German exhibition called “German High-Tech in Metal Working” under the aegis of the Expomaq trade fair in León.
Another promising region is the ASEAN bloc, whose countries represent a market volume of 3.9 billion euros. The Japanese have so far been dominating the market, not least because the Japanese automotive industry has a strong local presence. Japan supplies around half of the machine tools imported, Germany a mere 4 per cent. Nonetheless, German exports to the region have risen substantially in the past few years, and most recently totalled more than 150 million euros. “So greater involvement will be well worth while,” opines VDW Chairman Dr. Prokop.
Upgrading competitive advantage with new technologies
“If you want to continue prospering in the face of international competition, it’s increasingly imperative to offer solutions that others cannot emulate,” adds Heinz-Jürgen Prokop. Keyword Industry 4.0: it’s becoming progressively more difficult to attain major competitive advantages in terms of machine technology. For this reason, machine tool manufacturers are well advised to broaden their viewpoints and to think in terms of holistic production solutions. If these are to be consistently adopted throughout a system, this demands profound knowledge of the process concerned in the context of what are sometimes highly disparate customer’s requirements. “No one knows these worlds better than we do, and this is our great opportunity,” is Dr. Prokop’s firm conviction.
Another issue with a definite future is additive manufacturing. It enriches the range of existing conventional metalworking processes by enabling customised or complex components to be produced, for example. More and more manufacturers are accordingly examining the idea of hybrid machines, which combine conventional machining processes with additive manufacturing. Nonetheless, their use is viable only if it creates an additional benefit for the customers that justifies the higher production costs involved. “In the case of customised or complex components or in small series, this is easy to implement; in medium or large series and mass production, there’s still quite a lot left to do in order to achieve competitive unit costs,” admits the VDW’s Chairman.
125 years of success for the German machine tool industry – 125 years of the VDW
All in all, the German machine tool industry is in excellent shape. It is doing intensive work in the fields that it can influence itself, so as to successfully compete with its international counterparts. The majority of companies are taking globalisation on board and are operating all over the world. They are training young people, researching and developing new products, integrating new technologies, and expanding their spectrum of service capabilities. “If they succeed, they will maintain their international competitive lead,” is Dr. Prokop’s firm conviction.
The machine tool industry has since way over 100 years been demonstrating that it can repeatedly re-invent itself, has met and mastered numerous challenges, and never failed to upgrade its leading position in the world. This is equally true for the VDW, which in 2016 is celebrating its 125th anniversary. Over all these years, the association has provided backing and proactive support for the sector.
“Against this background, it’s all the more important to be properly prepared to identify and maintain a shared course, and never lose sight of the shared goal. What we’re relying on here is tradition and experience. What’s also essential is flexibility and creativity if you want to continue being successful even under altered situational conditions,” to quote Dr. Prokop.
Fujitsu document capture solutions are in line with this year’s CeBIT digital economy theme: join – create – succeed. PFU, a Fujitsu company, will be exhibiting Fujitsu document scanners in Hall 3 at Stand D18, showcasing its line of solutions that help businesses meet today’s growing business challenge – converting paper-based information into digital content. Fujitsu partners like Accantum, Ephesoft and Silex Technology Europe will use this platform to present their scan solutions for a range of applications and industries.
PFU will be exhibiting its range of solutions that integrate paper-based information in the public sector e-file systems as well as the new Fujitsu fi Series document scanners, which will set a new standard for high-performance desktop scanning.
The new models will feature the tried and tested PaperStream software to kick-start digital transformation, converting all scans into high-quality images and significantly accelerating OCR. PaperStream Capture offers organisations a versatile solution for the entire capture process, featuring an intuitive user interface to enhance the information feed into their organisation’s digital workflow.
Another highlight at the booth are the Software Development Kits (SDK) for ScanSnap, fi Series and network scanners. These SDKs provide the tools that Independent Software Vendors and software developers need to build integrated applications and create tailored document scanning solutions for customers.
Additionally, the 2016 CeBIT scanner presentation will focus on the Fujitsu SP Series scanner range; the solution of choice for first time enterprise use, helping businesses raise productivity.
“In order to keep up with today’s increasingly digital world, organisations from private businesses to government agencies are all looking for ways to implement electronic file management across their business processes,” said Mike Nelson, Vice President at Fujitsu subsidiary PFU (EMEA) Ltd. “Our line of professional document scanners continue to support and enable companies to remain competitive in the current fast-paced economic climate.”
Fujitsu brand scanners are designed, manufactured and marketed worldwide by PFU Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Fujitsu Limited (Japan). PFU is a globally active IT provider that designs, manufactures and markets computer hardware, peripheral products and enterprise software. PFU offers a broad portfolio of document scanners for professional personal, desktop, workgroup, high-volume production and networked environments and is one of the world’s leading document scanner companies. PFU has been engaged in the document imaging scanner business for more than 25 years and generates an annual turnover of over $1 billion. www.pfu.fujitsu.com/en/
Operating in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, PFU (EMEA) Limited is responsible for marketing and sales of Fujitsu document scanners. The European company was established in the United Kingdom in 1981 and has offices in Germany, Italy and Spain and a Knowledge Suite in France and Russia. http://www.fujitsu.com/uk/scanners