Graphical assistance system for interdisciplinary development of technical production systems – Smart Workbench

Project term: 01.10.2016 to 30.09.2020

Project management  / project funding: Sächsische Aufbaubank, funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) in Saxony

Production processes are becoming ever more complex and processes, plants, and machinery are being increasingly coupled together. This situation demands a special strategy for developing production plants and machinery, involving harmonization of activities between all the relevant parties.

The objective of the "Smart Workbench" project (German: Smarte Werkbank) is to develop a graphical assistance system for the support of interdisciplinary development processes of technical production systems. The project team will focus on improving interdisciplinary communication as well as the management of diverse information and its visualization. Existing models used in individual disciplines will be coupled and augmented by new models for interdisciplinary collaboration.

The graphical assistance system represents a central tool for the collaborative development of plants and machinery. It will coordinate the work of the various parties and the resulting data and information. It will also reduce the time required for the development work by drastically improving the synchronization of the work steps.

Essentially the graphical assistance system is prototype software. It can potentially run on various end devices, so making it compatible with the increased use of portable digital technology. The knowledge, project, and data management and the internal communication between the various parties in the development process will be addressed using representative assistance functions and intuitive visualization forms.

The project partners comprise five institutes of TU Dresden, the Fraunhofer IVV Dresden, and six SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises). The Fraunhofer IVV Dresden is responsible for conceiving an effective method for developing internal machine/plant processes. This involves on the one hand using all necessary information from the project effectively. On the other hand, for evaluating variants, empirical knowledge will be used from earlier projects and from all areas involved in the development process. The reasoned decision-making will result in considerably fewer costly and time-consuming changes and fewer iterative loops in the development process.