Factory 4.0 is the next milestone in modernizing and automating the factory in the 21st century. It's about increasing digitalization and automation of production with the aim of greater flexibility / agility, efficiency (energy, material consumption) and error minimization.

This is achieved by connecting all objects in the production process and allowing them to exchange data with each other: The Internet of Things (IoT) connects machines, tools and products with each other in order to enable the exchange of those data that are necessary for the control/optimization of the production process. Every machine, every autonomous transport vehicle, every screw to be assembled is represented by a digital twin in the Digital Factory; the digital twin contains and can provide all relevant information required for orchestration of the manufacturing process in the Smart Factory. GPS trackers indicate the location of an autonomous transportation vehicle for internal factory logistics, a RFID chip indicates the storage location of a component, the sensors of a machine indicate whether a machine is ready for production or not.


The author is a manager in the software industry with international expertise: Authorized officer at one of the large consulting firms - Responsible for setting up an IT development center at the Bangalore offshore location - Director M&A at a software company in Berlin.