PSI Blog

Twice As Good: Digital Twin Technology's Influence on the Metal Industry - TechTalks

17 Jul 2018 - Production, Industry 4.0

Our experts Gunther Schober, Luc Van Nerom, Robert Jäger, Igor Kunin and Ira Vollenberg

After the success of the first season, five new episodes of our TechTalks are now waiting in the wings to go online. For the second time, our PSI experts are eager to explain coherences, problems and backgrounds of the world of PSImetals in a vivid and easy way. So if you ever wondered how our KPI-driven production planning works or how we address the almost paradoxical approach of customizing a standard – Robert Jäger, Igor Kunin, Gunther Schober, Luc Van Nerom and Ira Vollenberg will give you the answers to all of these questions. 

In the current episode “The Factory Model: A Virtual Twin of Your Plant,” you can find out why our consultant Igor Kunin should only have a salad for today’s lunch and go to bed before 9pm.

Every plant is different

Why? Every plant has:

  • Different levels of automation
  • Different levels of the staff experience
  • Unique configuration processes

These differences drive the production and usually result in contrasting product qualities and costs of manufacturing. Thus, the natural question to ask is:

How to approach this complexity and optimize the production processes in the metals production?

In the first episode, our consultant Igor Kunin presents a solution to this question based on many years of experience and many successful projects. He explains in every detail why a Production Management System (PMS) in combination with the so-called “Factory Model” is the most efficient way to cope with the complexity of production processes.

What is PSImetals Production Management System?

Complex production processes generate and process large amounts of production data. For example:

  • The material data defines all kinds of material: slab, bloom, hot-strip, cold-strip, sheet, tube, etc.
  • The production order data is derived from the sales order data and contains information such as product description, quality requirements, schedule information, and so on. 
  • The production operation & process instruction data provide an insight into the production plan of each order and describes each production step individually. 
  • The production lines data shows an actual status and a technical performance of each production line regarding material and order characteristics 
  • On the basis of the stockyard data, the organization of the stock yards is managed.

All this information is based on an integrated Factory Model for consistent real-time plant status information that allows you to create a digital representation of your real production environment and processes that are tightly integrated with the real physical world. We call this Factory Model - a Digital Twin.

The Digital Twin of Your Plant

The Digital Twin of your plant contains all relevant information, understands all production processes and predicts what has to be done next while respecting current market and production situation.

Igor Kunin, PSI Metals Consultant

The Digital Twin of Your Plant © PSI Metals

In fact, it provides fast information exchange between physically disconnected departments like planning and production.

The main advantage of using the digital Factory Model is that the data stream coming from different sources in your plant is combined in one place and can be analyzed in real-time.

This kind of data-driven production allows you

  • faster and easier optimization as well as
  • improvement of the production processes.

The ability to store and archive virtually unlimited amounts of data enables simpler evaluationand provides research methods to better analyze and evaluate influencing parameters for quality and product improvement.

TechTalks Season 1: Let us inspire you!

While the new series are characterized by some carefully targeted digital effects, the pioneers of the first season of TechTalks were thrown into the cold water from a cinematic point of view. Only some abstract tools were allowed, but no well-known presentation tools as PowerPoint or the PSImetals software itself.

The film set was the PSI office in Berlin and the permitted properties included materials such as choc-olate, cooking pots, bricks and more. Although it was a jump in at the deep end for the entire film crew of the first season, the challenge was mastered with commitment, fun and creativity. Give it a try and let us inspire you!

Raffael Binder, Director Marketing PSI Metals GmbH

After taking over the marketing department of PSI Metals in 2015 Raffael Binder immediately positioned the company within the frame of Industry 4.0. So it is no wonder that in our blog he covers such topics as digitalization, KPIs and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Raffael’s interests range from science (fiction) and history to sports and all facets of communication.

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