With a record of 230,000 visiting trade professionals from more than 160 countries from around the world, K 2016 closed its doors in Düsseldorf on 23 October this year. The show, which takes place every three years, has once again confirmed its reputation as the world’s No. 1 in the plastics and rubber industry. Approximately 70 percent of the visitors came from abroad, whereby Asia represented by far the largest group of visitors from outside of Germany. “This year’s K drew an extremely large crowd and was very successful as far as the number and quality of our show contacts were concerned,” confirmed Thomas Kosthorst, Business Management Plastics Machines and Hydraulics Applications at Beckhoff.
Show visitors displayed the most pronounced interest in the topic of Industrie 4.0 and the concrete advantages that result for machine builders and end customers. The main attraction at the Beckhoff booth was the live demonstration of how companies in the plastics processing industry can use data acquisition and analysis in the cloud to analyse and eliminate quality problems and losses in productivity due to faulty machine settings. The added value for mechanical engineers is the ability to track the life cycle of their machines on the basis of the data recorded and to identify and correct mechanical problems or software errors. It is possible, for example, to analyse all data of a large number of the same machine types to ascertain wear and tear on pumps or gears by making a connection to the occurrence of certain frequency spectrums.
“Important topics in this context were connectivity and secure communication,” continued Thomas Kosthorst. “The focus here was on the Euromap-77 interface, which has been defined by the Euromap organisation for standardised communication between injection molding machines and IT systems. With the early integration of OPC UA into its control platfrom, Beckhoff is one of the first companies able to offer its customers a standard-compliant Euromap-77 interface.”