Almost 80 partners and a total budget of close to a billion kronor. The project Arrowhead can be one of the largest in Europe when it comes to developing automation to the manufacturing, energy and process industries. And LTU, through Professor Jerker Delsing, will play an important role as coordinator.
Among the many partners are corporate giants such as Siemens, Metso and Honeywell.
– It is very significant that Luleå University of Technology is entrusted to lead such a large project, says Jerker Delsing, EISLAB.
– We have already participated in several successful projects, and we have created ProcessIT.EU. To coordinate this project gives us further international reputation and paves the way for more collaborations in the future.
A project application, also coordinated by Jerker Delsing, will shortly be submitted to the European Industrial Association, Artemis. The project relates to the manufacturing, process and energy industries. The aim is to find ways of improving communication between embedded automation systems, so-called Service-Oriented Architecture. Today, such systems require both advanced design and large staffing resources when a large number of devices are linked together to communicate. Simply, new technologies could improve and make production flows more effective, thus contributing to a more collaborative automation.
– There are already several projects completed in this area. But the big, overarching issue has never been resolved and this project creates a movement in that direction, says Jerker Delsing.
An automated system that would greatly benefit from better communication, is so called intelligent ball-bearing. LTU already works together with SKF, doing research on intelligent ball bearing ore cars. In these bearings, there is a sensor that can warn in advance when the ball bearing, for example, is about to break. Hopefully, such warning systems will be able to warn a number of relevant agencies, such as the engine driver, the Swedish Transport Administration and the mining company.
Evaluation of the project application takes place in mid-October. If succesfull, the Arrowhead project will be launched during the first quarter of 2013. The project will last for four years and has a budget of 90-100 million Euros, of which Jerker Delsing estimates that between 20 and 35 million may end up at Luleå University of Technology. Besides EISLAB, the Division of Human Work Science and the Division of Operation, Maintenance and Acoustics are also involved in the project.