Tube manufacturing 4.0

Poppe + Potthoff is leading the way in the “it’s OWL” technology network: Intelligently networked measuring and control technology will enable highly flexible tube production

Werther (Germany), September 8, 2015 - Poppe + Potthoff is the new partner of the “it’s OWL” excellence cluster. The abbreviation stands for Intelligent Technical Systems OstWestfalenLippe (East-Westphalia-Lippe). At the company’s main plant in Werther a drawing plant for precision steel tubes is now being modernised to reflect the latest standards in measuring and control technology. The reference project is laying the groundwork for an “intelligent factory” which enables highly automated but simultaneously highly flexible, customer-specific manufacturing.

On 8 September 2015 the project partners came together for the official kick-off meeting. Together with experts for mechatronics and automation & control technology from the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Technology (IPT) and the University of Paderborn’s Heinz Nixdorf Institute Poppe + Potthoff will be equipping a precision steel tube production line with intelligently networked measuring and sensor technology to make it “fit for the future” – Industry 4.0.

When the project has been completed it will be possible to gather and analyse extensive process and quality data as well as to develop statistical models and rules to allow quasi-online control of the production line. “The system will not only make it possible to optimise process reliability, productivity and product quality but will also create the basis for innovation,” says Bengt-Henning Maas, CEO of Poppe + Potthoff Präzisionsstahlrohre GmbH.

Poppe + Potthoff Präzisionsstahlrohre is the new partner for the leading-edge cluster it´s OWL. Left to right: T. Lobert, R. Schöwerling, K. Fischer, B. Maas (Poppe + Potthoff Präzisionsstahlrohre), M. Krüger, M. Borzykh, L. Weigel, C. Fechtelpeter (IPT). Source: Poppe + Potthoff

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Schematic flow chart of the project phase focuses. Source: Poppe + Potthoff

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Poppe + Potthoff stands for precision. The group develops and manufactures customer-specific steel tubes, common rail subsystems, high pressure tubes, precision components, line shafts, couplings as well as specialized test stands and other machines. Poppe + Potthoff enables highly sophisticated solutions in automotive engineering and shipbuilding, machine tool building and mechanical engineering as well as other industries. The family-owned enterprise with its headquarters and technology center in Werther (Germany) was founded in 1928 and has more than 1,200 employees. Poppe + Potthoff is active in more than 50 countries with its subsidiaries and long-term partners – always in close contact with its customers.