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Digitalization: New RF5 Line Generation Paves the Way to Intelligent Products.

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Geneva, April 4, 2017 | With its new RF5 generation of lines, manufacturer Reifenhäuser Reicofil is offering its customers a unique modular package of digital solutions for intelligent machines and intelligent production. Digitalization makes the line easier to operate while also increasing system availability, product quality, output, and efficiency. Many of these solutions can be further developed in cooperation with customers and tailored to their specific requirements.

Jens Mager, development engineer in charge of digitization, has a clear vision of the future: “Our lines will know themselves best in the future. They will know their status, be able to predict the effects of parameter changes, communicate with other systems, learn, and solve production tasks independently. The first actual solutions are ready, and we have a huge potential for further innovation.”

For the development of their first digital modules, the experts at Reicofil have turned their attention to some typical, widespread customer problems. They developed solutions for more intuitive operation, continuous process and quality monitoring, predictive maintenance, and detection of anomalies. For example, the line will provide its operators with productivity analyses, predicts when a wear part is going to fail, warns the operator of drip formation before it occurs, and provides information to help solve the problem.

All the solutions so far can be seen as examples for many other concrete applications. Jens Mager perceives this capability of expansion as a special strength of digitization: “In the past few years, we built know-how in many areas like predictive maintenance or detection of anomalies and designed initial models based on the data we have available. The solutions show that they work. We are now looking forward to using these models and to working with customers to adapt them to meet specific requirements and challenges. Maybe it's not dripping that the customer wants to predict but something else entirely. The principle remains the same.”

With its profound engineering knowledge, Reicofil has the ideal prerequisites for developing and refining these digital models. Reicofil Managing Director Dr. Bernd Kunze explains this relationship: “Only good engineering can ensure good processes, and only good processes can guarantee high data quality – the prerequisite for functional solutions that are based on data. If the data basis is flawed, then the solution will be flawed as well.”

The digital solutions of Reicofil have primarily been developed for the new RF5 generation of machines. However, selected modules like the new Operation Center and the Digital Assistant will also benefit the new RF Smart lines. Reicofil will provide an initial overview of the possibilities and the practical uses of digitalization at the Index 2017 exhibition in Geneva, booth number 2531.

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