Industrie 4.0 in German-Chinese relations is no longer a dream of the future. But where exactly are we moving to? How can the implementation of concrete goals for international standardization be advanced? And what role do new technologies like Artificial Intelligence, 5G or Edge Computing play in this? These tasks and questions were addressed by the German-Chinese Commission on Standardization (DCKN) at the fifth meeting of the Industrie 4.0 sub-working group in Hangzhou in early December 2017.
Good results strengthen the partnership
The results of the German-Chinese sub-working groups Industrie 4.0 show the progress in the bilateral partnership.
With the reports on the harmonization of the reference architecture models RAMI and IMSA, the IT Security Standards Whitepaper and the Roadmap Predictive Maintenance, the SCI 4.0 together with the BMWi presents documents that are central for the cooperation in international standardization. No less important for the joint activities is the beginning of a mapping of relevant Industrie 4.0 norms and standards of both countries in order to be able to map a complete mapping of the respective standards landscape. In addition, the cooperation in 2018 will address key elements of international standardization such as the structure of the administrative shell, artificial intelligence and maturity models.
Numerous political and economic interests are involved in the cooperation. The number of players involved is correspondingly large. The exchange was initiated by the German Ministry of Economics and the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).
The experts involved come from German and Chinese standardization institutions, companies and trade associations. Together, they are developing proposals for the standardization of Industrie 4.0 - the digitalization of industrial production. The sub-working group emerged from the German-Chinese Commission for Cooperation in Standardization (DCKN), which was founded in 2011. It promotes joint standardization and the removal of technical barriers to trade between the two countries.
Technical leadership is provided by the German SCI 4.0 and the Chinese Intelligent Manufacturing Standardization Administration Group (IMSG). The SCI represents the German Institute for Standardization (DIN e.V.) and the German Commission for Electrical, Electronic & Information Technologies (DKE) on the German side. On behalf of the BMWi, the Global Project Quality Infrastructure (GPQI) of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH coordinates the activities and advises all participants.
Since 2017, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) has been supporting the international harmonization of national Industrie 4.0 concepts through SCI 4.0 with the "GoGlobal Industrie 4.0" project, in which the German Standardization Roadmap Industrie 4.0 plays an important role. It defines recommendations for action for national and international standardization and forms a basis for cooperation.
11th plenary meeting of the German-Chinese UAG 4.0
Central dialog mechanism for international I4.0 standardization
More than 120 experts gathered virtually under the accompaniment of BMWI and MIIT on July 13, 2021 for the 11th meeting of the German-Chinese sub-working group Industrie 4.0. Although the Corona pandemic and the resulting circumstances affect the German-Chinese cooperation for the second year in a row, the work results could also be kept on a high level this year. The virtual formats also had a positive impact on the cooperation and this high frequency has led to a large number of work results. For example, after the publication of four white papers at the last plenary session, four more are already about to be published.
At the opening, Ernst Stöckl-Pukall, Head of Unit for Digitalization and Industrie 4.0 at the BMWI, emphasized the achievements of joint bilateral cooperation in standardization. These underscore the potential for both countries to work together on solutions for the future of Industrie 4.0 and smart manufacturing processes, he said. Germany and China face common challenges for which solutions must be found together, he said. Through the dialogue that has been created, he said, they are contributing to the global harmonization of norms and standards in the most important industry of the future. Without it, effective cooperation on these topics would be difficult to achieve. The I4.0 UAG has now evolved into a central dialog mechanism for jointly identifying standardization needs and promoting a coordinated approach in international bodies, Ernst Stöckl-Pukall concluded.
In addition to the reports of the seven technical expert groups, the 11th plenary session focused in particular on the individual national standardization roadmaps. The new "National Guidelines for the Construction of Basic Security Standard System for the Internet of Things" were presented by Guo Nan, Director of Internet of Things Research Center, China Electronics Standardization Institute (CESI). This is a framework that is not exclusively focused on Industrie 4.0, but also on telecom and network topics. Although the Chinese Guidelines for the Construction of a National Intelligent Manufacturing Standard System and the German Industrie 4.0 Standardization Roadmap have differences, both publications serve to define collaboration. It is noticeable that elements such as the digital twin and the supply chain have been adopted in the National Guidelines compared to previous editions. Since these elements are also described in the German Industrie 4.0 standardization roadmap, they can be compared very well in the German-Chinese exchange.
Work is also underway on the German side for a new revision. This is being done in parallel in two directions, reported Dr. Jens Gayko, Managing Director of SCI 4.0, in his presentation. For example, the progress report on the I4.0 standardization roadmap will be published in April of next year for the Hanover Fair. This is intended to show the individual implementation progress on the recommendations for action and, at the same time, to help initiate the content direction for an upcoming Version 5 of NRM I4.0. The progress report will be published and presented at the Hannover Messe 2022. One year later - in April 2023 - the 5th edition of the I4.0 standardization roadmap would be published.
In the reports of the seven technical expert groups, it became clear that there will be an even greater focus on collaboration between the activities of the individual expert groups. Not least the topic of the convergence discussion of Digital Twin and Asset Administration Shell (AAS), which was included in the work program two years ago, shows the need to identify joint fields of action and will be published this year as a "Joint Report on DT/AAS". But before that, the "Joint Report on TSN", which will be published shortly, will describe and summarize the basic requirements for ISO/IEC 60802 in a joint, bilateral perspective for the first time in the UAG I4.0. Here, too, international standardization is the addressee.
A uniform understanding of use cases in the context of Industrie 4.0 has already been achieved between Germany and China in recent years. In order to also achieve the harmonization of concepts for the technical expert groups and their specific fields of action by means of use cases, the technical expert group Use Cases will increasingly be available as an "information hub" and take into account the above-mentioned idea of increased collaboration. The UAG working year will be concluded by the "Standardization report on AI in industrial applications" of the AIAIM technical expert group, with the aim of providing a summary overview of the numerous AI-relevant standardization activities with reference to industrial automation at national and international level.
With the planned publications "Security Tests White Paper for Sino-German Intelligent Manufacturing/Industrie 4.0" and the "Sino-german Whitepaper on functional safety aspects of digital lifecycle management", the coming year also promises to be labor-intensive, but also rich in results.
During its plenary sessions, the I4.0 UAG also regularly takes a look at forward-looking topics relating to digital transformation. Of particular interest this year was the presentation by Michael Jochem (Bosch) on the topic of collaborative condition monitoring. This use case of the Industrie 4.0 platform describes the added value of digital business models in a data-oriented platform economy. Through the collaborative use of Big Data, all participants can benefit, which in turn enables self-determined action in industrial value creation, i.e. sovereignty.
In 2011, the German-Chinese Commission for Standardization emerged from the working group Standardization of the German-Chinese Joint Economic Committee founded in 1979.
Its objectives are to further facilitate bilateral trade by removing technical barriers to trade, to promote bilateral economic and technical cooperation, to cooperate more closely on standardization issues and to coordinate activities in international standards organizations.
The annual meeting of the Joint Standards Commission thus offers a very good opportunity to further intensify the partnership-based cooperation between Germany and China on standardization policy issues.
Publication: Sino-German White Paper on Functional Safety for Industrie 4.0 and Intelligent Manufacturing
The White Paper sheds light on the Sino-German perspective on functional safety issues in the context of Industrie 4.0/Intelligent Manufacturing. It explains the basic concept of traditional technical safety, which was previously based on mechanical and electronic technology.
Publication: SME Test Bed Program Proposal
The Network Communications and Edge Computing Technical Expert Group of the Industrie 4.0 sub-working group published the SME Test Bed Program Proposal report in October 2020. The document illustrates a proposal to enable SMEs to participate directly in Industrie 4.0 initiatives. The proposal focuses on the use of test environments between manufacturing SMEs from China and Germany to stimulate the transition from old production solutions to solutions for Industrie 4.0 and thereby strengthen the standardization process and the dialogue between all participating standardization bodies. This also includes direct feedback on existing or new standards and specifications.
Publication: Guidance "Use Cases and Applications"
The revised version of the Guidance paper on use cases and applications is published in time for the 10th plenary session. There is a growing international consensus that new standardization activities are useful if the underlying driving use cases are clearly formulated and understood. In this respect, an internationally uniform understanding of use cases in the context of Industrie 4.0 is a central starting point in standardization work. Use cases are an instrument to build a bridge from the driving challenges facing the manufacturing industry to the corresponding possible technical solutions. Use cases also offer the possibility to derive new requirements for standardization. This suggestion has been actively taken up and implemented both nationally, for example in selected use cases of Labs Network Industrie 4.0, and internationally, especially in the context of the cooperation with the USA, China and Japan.
Publication: Examples for Business Scenarios in Manufacturing Industry
Premiere für die gemeinsamen Beschreibungen verschiedener Geschäftsszenarien und wie sich diese auf die Digitalisierung in der Fertigungsindustrie auf verschiedene Weise Auswirkungen auf die Gestaltung von Geschäftsmodellen haben können. Das Ziel der Kooperationslinie "Use Cases und Anwendungen" ist die Analyse von Geschäftsstrategien und Kundenbedürfnisse in der Fertigungsindustrie die sich in konkreten Kundenprojekten manifestieren. Die Erkenntnisse werden in sogenannten "Use Cases" zusammengestellt, die auf zu bekannten bewährten Verfahren, z.B. dem Industrial Internet-Referenzarchitektur (IIRA. Diese erleichtern ein gemeinsames Verständnis von Märkten, Trends, Triebkräfte, Konzepte und Lösungen und dienen dann als Grundlage zur Formulierung von Anforderungen an die Normung Aspekte.
White Paper on Functional Safety for Industrie 4.0 and Intelligent Manufacturing
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