Published on : Monday, June 17, 2019
For the exhibitors this year, LIGNA provided a rare opportunity to explore through the latest innovations unveiled by participants from 50 nations across the world. A total of more than 1,500 exhibitors participated in the Hannover fair to indulge into five action-packed days, encouraging the organisers to look back on a truly impressive event.
The manufacturers of wood processing machinery for solid as well as engineered wood focused on automation as well as the integrated system, with a specific focus on the modular technologies as a solution to digitisation. The approach is one of its kind providing end-to-end digitisation, where everything starting from idea generation or concept planning, designing and monitoring could be controlled and monitored on the digital platform. Besides this, the new digitisation technologies further enabled companies and users to stay connect and improve customer relationships through the use of smartphones. The LIGNA App this year made a special debut that changed the experience of the participants in a unique way.
The recent development in the Robotics Technology was displayed at LIGNA. Robotics was present in different areas of industrial manufacturing, from materials handling to collaborative processing by humans and machines along with the surface finishing. The surface-finishing link in the value chain is becoming increasingly integrated into the overall production system. Automated guided vehicle systems are optimising materials flows. And advanced central system control modules are intelligently managing the associated data and aggregating it quickly and efficiently for even the most demanding of single-batch production scenarios.
With industry 4.0 revolution in the wood and furniture industry, at LIGNA, cloud technologies gained special importance on the show. Users today understand the cloud-based data management now fully transformed the proprietary system to the digital ecosystem. This has further encouraged the growth of an array of digital assistance solutions, the use of production data for preventive maintenance and production planning is improving.
Another industry vision that is soon to become a reality is networking based on standardised communication protocols for all machines. Here, the European Federation of Woodworking Machinery Manufacturers (EUMABOIS) and the German Engineering Federation (VDMA) used LIGNA to present a framework for a new P&W (Plug & Work) standard. The framework is a joint project by eight leading European manufacturers of woodworking machinery.
LIGNA 2019 further presented “all-in-one” solutions that can efficiently bring together multiple standalone machines to create integrated process flows. The show likewise featured new developments in saw technology that deliver industrial safety benefits. These involve high-performance sensor systems for material detection – a new generation of self-learning scanner technology that represents an exciting initial implementation of AI in woodworking.
The highlights of the wood-based construction area of the show included the world premiere of a six-axis aggregate that can process work-pieces on all sides without repositioning. There was also a newly developed membrane press that can handle curved and uneven surfaces. And in the digital printing part of the LIGNA surface technology showcase, visitors witnessed a new software that can generate even extremely challenging decorative laminate layers, such as stone-look, in a single pass while maintaining an extremely high level of quality.
In the forestry technology section this year the key focus was on areas like climate change, Forestry 4.0, digital machine integration, supply chain tracking, timber flow management, the use of VR headsets for machine control, and apps for various in-forest operations. Other key themes related to the development of forest access routes and new approaches to forest logistics.
The programme also included an array of special zones and events that generated a great deal of visitor interest, among them the LIGNA.Forum, the LIGNA Campus, and, of course, the LIGNA Training Workshops for equipment users from the joinery, cabinetmaking, carpentry and assembly trades. And then there were the absolute visitor magnets, chief among them the Crane Driving Championships and the German Logging Championship. The world’s leading trade show successfully continued for five days and then culminated on an impressive note, paving way for future investment.