3rd PROTECA-network breakfast – Exchange between SMEs and researchers on the thematic complex “Industry 4.0”

  Proteca Copyright: © Cluster of Excellence Integrative Production Technology for High-Wage Countries

The operator network PROTECA of the Cluster of Excellence “Integrative Production Technology for High-Wage Countries” at RWTH Aachen is growing. Not only in numbers of participants, but also in importance. Besides that the organizers are pleased to win the Chamber of Industry and Commerce Aachen (IHK) over. The demand for solutions and support in terms of future and competitive capability is more relevant than ever – especially for smaller companies. Everyone agreed: The topic Industry 4.0 does certainly not only concern large companies. The problem is, though, that doubts are still being raised. After all, the construct Industry 4.0 is not really tangible and certainly involves costs and risks in terms of data security, a risk, companies cannot dare take easily. For this reason, the operator network of the Cluster of Excellence PROTECA provides assistance for the SMEs in the city and region Aachen in making contact with the University to find solution and support together – also for individual questions.

  Proteca Copyright: © Cluster of Excellence Integrative Production Technology for High-Wage Countries Kurt Heinen and Andreas Haas (Heinen Automation GmbH)

The regional group of entrepreneurs met with the scientists of the Cluster of Excellence for an informal breakfast - by now for the third time. The meeting took place in the Centre for Metallic Design e.V. (ZMB). The resonance to the network breakfast was highly positive. “It’s a great platform to get to know the neighboring companies in the region”, said one participant. Specific examples of regional entrepreneurs were presented. Kurt Heinen (Heinen Automation GmbH from Monschau) already cooperates with numerous institutes of RWTH Aachen and sees the close relationship to the university as a great opportunity. This was also emphasized by Oliver Schürings (Ph-MECHANIK from Aachen), who presented especially the activities in the Entrepreneurs Working Group and the cooperation among themselves. The importance of cooperation – among themselves and with the university – is decisive added value of the network for the participants. Together with the Department of Economic Development of the city of Aachen, the StädteRegion Aachen, the Vereinigte Unternehmerverbände Aachen (VUV) and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce Aachen (IHK), the Cluster of Excellence created within the operator network PROTECA a series of events which bridge the gap that often exists between research and application. This is an everyday problem particularly for small businesses – to recognize and use the needs and local potential. The aim of PROTECA is to find existing contact and common optimization points and bring them to life with permanent success.