Company 03/03/2020

Bäumer partners with research project “Manu-Brain”

In the research project “Manu-Brain”, the University of Siegen is currently developing a platform for artificial intelligence (AI) that is expected to offer easier access and usability without great technical effort, making it easier for small and medium-sized companies to get started in the world of modern digital process optimization.

FUTURE is written in capital letters here

Many medium-sized companies are still not using all their options when it comes to optimizing products or processes by means of artificial intelligence. There are many reasons for this – they cannot quite imagine what lies behind these technical terms, they fear exorbitant costs or great technical efforts. As one of the participants in “Manu-Brain”, we wish to help remove these obstacles.

Research and industry partners are working together to ensure the practical relevance of the developments. Dr. Christoph Moisel, Research and Development Director at Bäumer, sees the broad panel of experts as a big advantage: “We provide our partners with use cases and a problem definition. The other experts apply their know-how and think about how these problems can be solved. They help us find the right system.” According to Moisel, this challenge could not have been met by Bäumer alone: “The field of artificial intelligence is still relatively unexplored. As we are in uncharted territory and as the development is complicated, we as a company would not be able to do it on our own.”

According to the Research & Development Director, the project’s objective is to render the many different possibilities of technical application usable for clients. “We want to facilitate the access to artificial intelligence for small and medium-sized manufacturing companies,” said Prof. Dr. Ing. Peter Burggräf, university professor for International Production Engineering and Management (IPEM).

Software usable in various areas

Within the project “Manu-Brain”, an open, scalable and universal platform for various industrial applications of artificial intelligence is being created – an algorithm toolkit which can be accessed by the companies. The software stores data from machines, evaluates it and helps to optimize processes. For example, it would question why a machine shows a certain amount of idle time and suggest a possible settings adjustment to optimize the processes based on the collected data.

“These are just a few examples out of many. The possible uses of the AI platform are going to be very diverse,” explained project leader Fabian Steinberg from the University of Siegen. According to him, what makes the software unique is that it could be used in many different industrial applications.

Project supported with € 1.8 million from EU and Land funds

The Land of North Rhine-Westphalia and the European Regional Development Fund are supporting the project with a total of € 1.8 million over three years within the scope of the lead market competition IKT.NRW. The subsidy notice was recently delivered by Prof. Dr. Andreas Pinkwart, Minister of Economy and Digitalization of North Rhine-Westphalia. In total, eleven innovation projects are being supported with around 16 million euros.

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