Manufacturing-X Data Space

VDMA and ZVEI present “Construction Plan Study: Manufacturing-X Data Space”
What could a data space for Manufacturing-X look like in the future and what is important? The VDMA and ZVEI’s blueprint study provides an impetus for this.

A study commissioned by VDMA and ZVEI and conducted by the Fraunhofer Institutes ISST, IOSB and IPA shows for the first time how a data space could be designed for the Manufacturing-X data ecosystem, which is considered the next big step in the implementation of Industrie 4.0. In doing so, the study primarily takes into account the specific requirements of manufacturing companies from small and medium-sized enterprises and their expectations of a secure and value-creating digital data economy.

“The blueprint study provides an important impetus for the future Manufacturing-X data space and is a milestone for its design and development,” says Hartmut Rauen, Deputy Managing Director of VDMA. “After all, the architecture of Manufacturing-X will play a decisive role in determining the added value that companies can derive from the data space in order to make optimum use of production data and thereby increase efficiency.”

In order to be able to create an innovative and secure data space from the outset, the study has taken a comprehensive approach that looks at basic services and organizational aspects in addition to the digital architecture. Great importance is attached to the flexibility and scaling of the data space. The aim is also to design Manufacturing-X in such a way that the specific requirements of the participating companies can be immediately incorporated and also dynamically developed further.
“In the future, small and medium-sized companies in particular will be able to exchange their data more easily and, moreover, share it with third parties on an equal footing. At the same time, the sovereignty and security of the data will be preserved. With Manufacturing-X, we are building on existing standards, be it the Asset Administration Shell, the OPC UA standards in the umati environment or the use of so-called EDC connectors. Ultimately, it’s about maximum interoperability for the integration of as many players as possible,” emphasizes Gunther Koschnick, ZVEI division manager for industry. “The blueprint study points the way to how this interplay can take place.”

Boris Otto, executive director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Software and Systems Engineering ISST, is convinced of the benefits of data ecosystems and their rapid spread: “Data spaces allow data to be shared while protecting the trust and data sovereignty of participants and without the lock-in effects of traditional platform architectures. The resulting data ecosystems provide benefits for a wide range of different participants – which is very much in line with the structure of the mechanical engineering and electronics industries. Manufacturing-X is a unique opportunity for the industry to increase its resilience, competitiveness and sustainability. With Catena-X and the IDS and Gaia-X work, many foundations have also been laid that will allow rapid implementation.”

The next step is to refine the blueprint study for Manufacturing-X in close collaboration with manufacturing industry partners. Feedback and lessons learned from these “deep dives” will be used to further optimize the final implementation of Manufacturing-X and ensure that it meets the specific needs of the industry.
Please refer to the Pre-study data space Manufacturing-X file for further information on the study.