Archive for the ‘events’ Category

Grace @ SMAU

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Grace project is finished, but the dissemination of the scientific and industrial results achieved in the project continues.

On the 23 of October, Loccioni Group, technical and scientific responsible of the Grace consortium, was invited to present the Grace approach and solutions in a workshop about the production management in intelligent factories. The workshop was organized inside the SMAU fair in Milan.

The discussion tried to give answers to important questions like:

  • Why a company should invest in intelligent solutions?
  • Which is the best way to implement an intelligent system?
  • How is possible to integrate the human know-how in an automatic system?

Thanks to the experience gained in the Grace project it was possible to give an important contribution to the discussion showing the achievements had in the demonstration and validation phase of the project about the products quality improvement and the process efficiency increase, illustrating the engineering methodology for developing Grace-like systems and describing the important role of human operators in the training and the execution phase of the system.

The key to achieve efficiency in a modern factory is the integration of automation and information technology for generating a flow of information that permits to adapt the production process to market requests, and to planned and unplanned changes. The prototypes and the multi-agent system developed in the Grace project prove that a more intelligent production system can really exist and that its implementation is cost-effective.

Final review meeting_the story

Monday, June 17th, 2013

The Grace project, after three years of research and implementations, has came to its conclusion. A conclusion that does not mean the end of activities, because the solutions implemented in the Whirlpool production line are continuing to work and to collect data, improving the process efficiency and increasing the knowledge about the MAS architecture.

A research project is a fundamental step towards innovation and its ending means to show to the EU Commission (that co-financed the project) the activities carried out and the results obtained.

The Grace project final review meeting was held in Naples on June 13 and 14, 2013, in the Whirlpool factory, and was attended by all the consortium partners and the EU Commission reviewers.
A two-day meeting to demonstrate our agents running in a real industrial environment. Probably the biggest MAS implementation and installation in industry, composed by more than 1500 agents and bringing together the three different areas of production equipment, control systems and optimization of the product.

But what happened during the meeting?

June 12
The day before

A lot of work to prepare the demonstration tour. In the reliability lab the group was defining the last details, checking the MAS architecture and all quality and functional tests. But finally everything was ready, everything was running!

June 13
_Day_1_Demonstration sessions

At the Whirlpool Naples premises everything was ready to welcome the EU Commission reviewers.

After the overview of the project by Nicola Paone (UNIVPM) and Matthias Foehr (SIEMENS), the demonstration tour started: beginning with the assembly line, passing through the quality and functional tests, up to the reliability lab, showing the solutions developed within the Grace project.

June 14
Day_2_Presentation sessions

All the work packages of the project have been presented and finally the interventions (and the congratulations!) of the EU commission officer and the project technical assistant, who underlined that the greatest value of the project has been in carring out the pilot phase directly in the factory and not just in a laboratory.

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