Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Five automation trends to look for at Hannover Messe 2019

January 28, 2019
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Dr. Jochen Köckler

January 28, 2019 – Hannover Messe, the world’s largest industrial technology fair, takes place April 1 to 5, 2019 in Hannover, Germany, and organizers have released new details on what to expect from this year’s “Industrial Intelligence” theme.

An anticipated 6,500 companies from 75 countries will exhibit their components and system solutions, from global corporations to small and medium-sized enterprises to startups. All of the leading providers of automation, robotics, industrial software, drive systems and fluid power technology, energy technologies, subcontracting and research and development will be represented at the show. Sweden is the official Partner Country, and will be showcasing itself as a driver of the digital transformation of industry.

“Hannover Messe is the world’s only platform to highlight the way mechanical and electrical engineering components and systems mesh with the digital technologies offered by software and IT companies,” says Dr. Jochen Köckler, chairman of the Deutsche Messe managing board. “It is the only place where visitors from the production and energy industries can get a panorama view of the future of industry.”

Here are five trends to look for at Hannover Messe 2019:

1. Machine learning

“Artificial intelligence has the potential to revolutionize industry,” says Köckler. “In the future, AI technologies will be used to control connected production plants and continuously improve systems, all the while increasing quality standards, as manufacturing processes become increasingly flexible and cost-efficient.”


Industrial companies are increasingly taking advantage of innovative digital technologies, employing data analysis to gain relevant insights into optimization potential, to enhance existing products by adding new digital services or launch completely new business models on the market.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence play a key role here by linking data from different sources, predicting errors and solving problems. More than 100 application examples for machine learning will be on display at the show.

2. 5G for industry
From 2020 onward, the new 5G mobile communications standard is set to lay the cornerstone for the sweeping digitization of economy and society. Leading-edge technologies like machine learning in production and autonomous driving will then become ready for application. As Köckler says, “5G is going to enable industry to realize the full potential of Industry 4.0.”

Here, too, Hannover Messe will be offering a concrete glimpse of the future. In Hall 16, there will be a first-ever 5G test field. Together with network equipment provider Nokia, the “5G Arena” will demonstrate the potential for industry opened up by the fifth generation of mobile communications.

3. The future of work
But the lead theme of “Industrial Intelligence” means more than just smart technology: i.e. the digital networking of people and machines in an age of artificial intelligence.

“When we talk about the advantages of artificial intelligence, this doesn’t mean we can do without human intelligence – on the contrary,” says Köckler. “Responsibility, creativity and leadership – with these qualities, people will continue to play the most important role in tomorrow’s industry.”

This is why cooperation between people and machines will be one of the central themes at Hannover Messe 2019. The new “Future of Work in Industry” conference will make a significant contribution to this. On April 3, some 300 experts, thought leaders and industry leaders will meet to discuss the impact of digitization on labour skills and organization. These include philosopher and author Richard David Precht, Siemens Chief Human Resources Officer Janina Kugel and “human cyborg” Ralf Neuhäuser.

4. Mobility and lightweight design
Mobility is a cornerstone of our industrial society. The automobile remains at the core of individual mobility. Here, too, Hannover Messe delivers a decisive impetus: The energy infrastructure for electric mobility plays a key role at the world’s leading trade fair. The solutions presented by exhibiting companies there create the necessary conditions for the success of the mobility turnaround.

Another focus of Hannover Messe 2019 will again be lightweight design, which also has an important role to play in the eMobility megatrend. But other industries are also discovering the potential of lightweight design, which goes far beyond mere savings in weight, material consumption and costs. Rather, it is a matter of making a product or component better – for example in terms of its resilience, efficiency, design and resource consumption. A highlight in this context consists of the Germany government’s first lightweight design summit at Hannover Messe, organized by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy on Tuesday, April 2.

5. Industrial Pioneers Summit
Looking into the future also includes the question of what will come after Industry 4.0. Specialists in digitization, AI, human-machine collaboration and platform economics will address these issues at the first Industrial Pioneers Summit, which is also slated to attract more than 500 participants on Tuesday at the show. The aim is to develop a vision for the year 2025.

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