DFKI at Hannover Messe 2023

Synthetic data for environmental protection, AI methods for the resilient and crisis-resistant manufacturing industry, quantum computing, dynamic supply chains and secure data spaces, smart farming, and agricultural robotics - with this spectrum of key topics, DFKI 2023 will be represented in three halls at the Hannover Messe. At the MWK Lower Saxony joint stand, Hall 2, Stand A40, the Saarland joint stand, Hall 2, B34, and at the Industrial Wireless Arena & 5G Networks in Hall 14, DFKI will show project results, technologies, and demonstrators from the Lower Saxony, Saarbrücken and Kaiserslautern sites. In Hall 8, the SmartFactory_KL will demonstrate further development of its Production Level 4 concept with the _KUBA Modular Production Unit.

The exhibits in detail

Agri-Gaia – Generation of synthetic training data for AI models

Synthetic data can be generated in large quantities faster and cheaper than their counterparts and are used in many applications in AI development. As training material for AI models, they provide the data basis for new experimental use cases. In the Agri-Gaia project, the research groups of the Plan-based Robot Control and Marine Perception research departments at DFKI have developed a new approach for detecting plastic waste in the environment, especially in agricultural settings.
In this use case, realistic computer graphics are used to generate artificial images whose contents, such as the positions of individual objects in the image, are known and can therefore be easily used for machine learning. At Hannover Messe, the project team from DFKI's Lower Saxony site will explain the underlying problem and demonstrate its method and possible applications. In Agri-Gaia, DFKI and partners from academia and industry are exploring open AI technologies for the agri-food industry within an AI ecosystem based on GAIA-X, the European sovereign data infrastructure.

Agri-Gaia is funded with 11.75 million euros by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Action over a period of three years.

Further information: https://www.agri-gaia.de / Location: Joint booth MWK Lower Saxony, Hall 2, Stand A40

SPAICER – Visual Anomaly Detection in Production

Production disruptions or supply chain interruptions are a business risk in a globalized and interconnected industry. A company's ability to anticipate and proactively adapt to disruptions such as tool wear, raw material quality variations, or supply shortages is the "quest for resilience." Reinforced by a significant increase in complexity in production due to Industrie 4.0, resilience management is becoming an indispensable success factor for industrial production.
The SPAICER project aims to develop AI-based smart resilience services to generate comprehensible recommendations for action that enable decision-makers to initiate meaningful stabilization measures at an early stage. These smart services are to be offered on an open digital platform. This means that companies can use them without having to build up extensive AI expertise or hand over their data sovereignty.
With the "Visual Quality Inspector," the project team from the Smart Service Engineering research area is demonstrating a process for image-based anomaly detection at the Hannover Messe, which detects deviations from quality standards in end products. If deviations in the condition of the products are noticed, recommendations for action can be derived from this and implemented while the production cycle is still running. The advantages are the reduction of production defects, cost savings, and the avoidance of production waste.

SPAICER is being funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy as part of the Innovation Competition for Artificial Intelligence from 1.4.2020 - 31.3.2023 with a total volume of just under €10 million.

Further information: https://www.spaicer.de / Location: Saarland Saaris Joint Booth, Hall 2, Stand B34

PAIRS – Forecasting Supply Chain Issues

With the "Hidden Problem Detector," the Smart Service Engineering research department demonstrates a model for identifying hidden problems in supply chains from the PAIRS (Privacy-Aware, Intelligent and Resilient CrisiS Management) project. PAIRS pursues the development of a learning platform for crisis management that combines AI and human intelligence. The AI hybrid technologies are designed to anticipate both the initial crisis event and the reactions of various actors in cross-domain data space to generate targeted recommendations for action.
The Hidden Problem Detector is a model for graph-theoretic analysis of component criticality to detect hidden problems in supply chains. For this purpose, BOM data is automatically converted into a knowledge graph, semantically enriched and fed with historical and current market data, e.g., prices. The model can answer questions such as "Which are critical components?" "Are there changes in delivery times?" or "Are there fluctuations in availability?".
PAIRS is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy from 1.06.2021 - 31.5.2024 as part of the Innovation Competition for Artificial Intelligence with a total volume of almost €10 million.

Further information: https://www.pairs-projekt.de / Location: Saarland Saaris Joint Booth, Hall 2, Stand B34

QUASIM – Quantum Computing-based Simulations in Manufacturing

Manufacturing is one of the most important German industries and must meet the highest quality standards. In order to avoid manufacturing errors, simulations are used to optimize machine parameterizations, which are often challenging for SMEs as they place particular demands on engineering knowledge.
QUASIM is testing a quantum computing (QC) approach to accelerate simulations in manufacturing and make them more practical by reducing modeling efforts through quantum machine learning (QML). Compared with previous methods, innovative solutions based on QC are designed, implemented, integrated into low-threshold Quantum Services (QS), and made available in distributed environments. In particular, hybrid models combining QC and machine learning (ML) are promising. This should enable manufacturing companies to access QS with limited simulation expertise.
The exhibit uses machining and laser cutting as examples to show how offloading simulations and training into QS support models from numerics and ML. In this way, simulations are accelerated, and innovative simulation models are transferred to industrial practice in the first place.

Further information: https://www.quasim-project.de / Location: Saarland Saaris Joint Booth, Hall 2, Stand B34

_KUBA Modular Production Unit – SmartFactory-KL

On the _KUBA modular production unit of the SmartFactory-KL, visitors can configure a model truck, the production of which starts immediately on-site. In parallel, the CO2 footprint, energy consumption, and material composition are tracked and displayed via the management shell. Many key technologies such as Digital Twins, Operational Safety Intelligence, 5G, Artificial Intelligence, Digital Product Passport, and Administrative Shell are visible at the SmartFactory-KL joint stand.
"_KUBA is part of our Shared Production, with which we are putting our Production Level 4 vision into practice. There, we have implemented the latest technologies to test how dynamic supply chains can be built using secure data spaces (Gaia-X) and matching platforms," says Prof. Dr. Martin Ruskowski, head of SmartFactory-KL and the Innovative Factory Systems research department at DFKI.
SmartFactory-KL refers to a research and industry network that rests on three pillars: the association Technologie-Initiative SmartFactory KL e.V. and the two scientific research institutions "Innovative Factory Systems" at DFKI and the Chair "Machine Tools and Controls" (WSKL) at the Rhineland-Palatinate Technical University Kaiserslautern-Landau.

Further information: https://smartfactory.de / Location: SmartFactory-KL Joint Booth, Hall 8, Stand D18

Open6GHub – 6G for Society and Sustainability

The goal of the "Open6GHub" is to contribute to a global 6G harmonization process and standard in the European context that takes into account Germany's interests in terms of societal priorities (sustainability, Climate Action, data protection, resilience) while strengthening the competitiveness of companies, technological sovereignty, and the position of Germany and Europe in the international competition for 6G.
The Open6GHub will contribute to the development of an overall 6G architecture, but also of end-to-end solutions in the following areas, among others: advanced network topologies with highly agile so-called organic networking, security and resilience, wireless and photonic transmission methods, sensor functionalities in the networks and their intelligent use and further processing, and application-specific radio protocols.
The Open6GHub is open for collaborations with industry and users and installs OpenLabs and experimental fields for this purpose. The involvement of SMEs and start-ups and their results promote an overall innovation system.

Further information: https://www.open6ghub.de / Location: Industrial Wireless Arena & 5G Networks & Applications, Hall 14, Stand H06/1

DFKI-Spin-off Nature Robots

Nature Robots develops autonomous robots for regenerative agriculture. Based on the self-built long-term autonomous monitoring robot Lero, the company creates temporally and spatially high-resolution, three-dimensional plant maps of crops and weeds, which are transferred into a monitoring interface for agronomists, farmers, and plant breeders. The AI and robotics systems allow use in natural and arbitrarily structured environments such as vegetable, fruit, and grape growing, as well as agroforestry, forestry, photovoltaic, and agro-photovoltaic environments. Nature Robots is a spin-off of DFKI and was founded in Osnabrück in January 2022.

Further information: naturerobots.de

Keynote: "Sustainable Agriculture Through Multiple Individual Crops and Autonomous and Robust 3D Robot Navigation"
Sven Lake, DFKI Research Department Plan-based Robot Control and Nature Robots
Date: Tue, April 18, 2023, 5:45 p.m.
Location: Industrial Wireless & 5G Conference Stage, Hall 14

Plantmap – Three-dimensional plant map

The project's goal is a temporally and spatially highly resolved three-dimensional map of individual plants and entire beds to support organic farming. Combined with the Move Base Flex navigation and control software, Plantmap enables autonomous navigation in steep and unstructured terrain such as vegetable, fruit, or market gardens and agroforestry farms. This allows an autonomous robot to track the condition and development of individual plants, their shape and phenotype, and key plant parameters on a daily basis to gather recommended actions, AI training data, and new knowledge about the complexities of bio-intensive agriculture. Taken together, this database can significantly contribute to optimizing organic farming practices, potential methods, and technologies.
PlantMap (Powerful Long-term Autonomous Navigation Towards Monitoring Agricultural Plants) is funded by EXIST research transfer and coordinated by DFKI.

Further information: https://naturerobots.de/tech/3d_plant_mapping / Location: Industrial Wireless Arena & 5G Networks & Applications, Hall 14, Stand H06/25

Cognitive Weeding – Companion Plant or Weed?

Crop plants in the field have two kinds of companions: undesirable weeds and weeds that do not affect the crop and may even be worth protecting. The CognitiveWeeding research project aims to develop a different view of the field companion flora and weed control. Considering yield security, the focus is on biodiversity conservation and enhancement in organic and conventional crop production. The approach goes beyond the current cropping period and crop rotation. The classification takes into account the farm-specific crop production as well as the given site and weather conditions in the context of crop rotation and the impact on biodiversity on the respective (sub)area. With the nature-based, innovative development of an AI-based decision-making system for species-rich weed management, Cognitive Weeding contributes to overcoming current ecological challenges. The project is funded by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety, and Consumer Protection (BMUV).

Further information: https://cognitive-weeding.de/projekterklaerung / Location: Industrial Wireless Arena & 5G Networks & Applications, Hall 14, Stand H06/25

5G-Agrar – Sustainable Agricultural Economy

For the agricultural industry, 5G offers the possibility of collecting large amounts of data, and analyzing it in real-time, thereby optimizing agricultural processes on a large scale. With new technologies, the entire value chain should be made more sustainable and transparent, as well as ensure the future viability of upstream and downstream industries. The project's goal is a more sustainable agricultural economy, which enables demand-oriented actions based on real-time data evaluation. The district of Vechta in Lower Saxony was selected as part of the 5G innovation competition for implementation funding from the German Federal Ministry of Digital Affairs and Transport (BMDV). DFKI at the Lower Saxony site is one of the project partners.
The aim of the BMDV funding is to enable demand-oriented decisions in agriculture through the use of 5G and, at the same time, to contribute to the sustainable use of resources. New ways are continuously being sought to make food production more efficient, sustainable, environmentally friendly, and transparent. In agriculture, data has only been collected selectively within the value chain. In animal husbandry, illnesses can be prevented by combining real-time animal movement data with other data from the barn and from other stages of the value chain (e.g., health data from the parent animals or slaughter findings). With the help of artificial intelligence, farmers can take targeted action in animal health care for each individual animal and thus, for example, reduce the use of antibiotics.

Further information: https://www.dfki.de/web/forschung/projekte-publikationen/projekt/5g-agrar / Location: Industrial Wireless Arena & 5G Networks & Applications, Hall 14, Stand H06/25

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Christof Burgard

Head of Communications & Media DFKI Saarbrücken

German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence
Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz