Intelligent assistance systems for service staff in the smart factory

22 July 2014

In the factories of the future a new range of possibilities will appear based on the affiliation of real production processes with the virtual world. Within a cooperative project between Austrian industry-, science and private institutions, under the title “Assist 4.0”, intelligent assistance systems will be developed which will support service staff in their decision processes.

Assist 4.0 focuses on the development of mobile, context-based assistance systems for the industry 4.0 through:

- active decision making support for service staff through a multimodal assistance system,

- making optimal use of the potential of innovative interfaces in the interaction between humans and machines,

- development of information models to transform data, information and occurrences into context-bases decisions.

In the course of the project a total of six use cases which are based on the needs of the industry partners will be conceptualised, implemented and evaluated.

Augmented Reality and Smart Glasses as key technologies

The range of interaction possibilities and interfaces is big. By using augmented reality technologies additional visual instructions can be provided for the service technicians while they are performing maintenance tasks. If the information is displayed using a data glasses both hands of the service technician will remain free. The instructions can either be obtained as multimedia content or as real time information provided by a back office expert. Also in coherence with education and training on the job scenarios mobile technologies will gain importance throughout the upcoming years. Therefore all information required needs to be context-based, provided in high quality, and should be navigable via audio commands, gesture or touch-screens.

The project is lead by Knapp AG in collaboration with AVL List GmbH, evolaris next level GmbH, Infineon Technologies Austria AG, Paris-Lodron-Universität Salzburg, Research Studios Austria Forschungsgesellschaft mbH,  XiTrust Secure Technologies GmbH and NexxaCon. The project has a duration of 30 months and a budget volume of 3 Mio. EUR whereof 1.8 Mio. EUR are funded by the FFG-Programme “Produktion der Zukunft” (Production of the future).

Peter Brandl