Industrie 4.0

  Copyright: WZL, RWTH Aachen

In 2011 the German government initiated the project ‚Industrie 4.0‘ in order to push on the integration of production with Information and Communication Technology (ICT). The goal is to develop a smart factory in which products find their own way through production as well as alternatives in case of disturbances. As technological basis serve cyber-physical systems and the "Internet of Things and Services".

Institutes Short Description

The Demonstrators of the Cluster of Excellence "Integrative Production Technology for High-Wage Countries" show technological and organizational concepts of Industrie 4.0.


The Reference Factory "Industrie 4.0" of the Smart Logistics Cluster serves as testing environment for new concepts within the topics of "Industrie 4.0".


The Institute for Industrial Management (FIR) at RWTH Aachen University focuses among others on Information Technology Management, Master Data Management and Supply Chain Design in the context of "Industrie 4.0".


Furthermore, the Innovation-Labs of the Logistics Cluster at FIR serve as research environment for the shared work within the Cluster and the Centers.


In close cooperation between the Institut für Textiltechnik (ITA) at RWTH Aachen University and the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology (FIT) the project "Blended Learning" is currently focusing on aspects of Augmented Reality.


As part of the project "Smart Factory" (a sub-project of the BMBF-project futureTEX) the ITA furthermore cooperates with other research partners in order to develop processes and structures for implementing Smart Factories in the textile industry as well as focusing on typical "Industrie 4.0" applications.


Focusing on analysis and design of socio-technical systems for an aging work staff, the project SozioTex is currently being implemented in close collaboration between the ITA and the Department of Sociology of Technology and Organization at the Institute of Sociology at RWTH Aachen University.


As part of the federal funding program “Autonomik für Industrie 4.0”, the ITA-project “SpeedFactory – Autonomik für die Sportartikelindustrie” aims at automated piece production of sporting goods and car seats.

Kex Logo

As provider of demand-based information by scanning, scouting and monitoring the KEX Knowledge Exchange AG also deals with "Industrie 4.0" technologies.


As part of an intraregional cooperation between the North Rhine-Westphalian regions Rhineland, Metropole Ruhr and OstWestfalenLippe (OWL), the RWTH Aachen-based institutes FIR as well as the Laboratory for Machine Tools and Production Engineering (WZL) contribute to the “Competence Center Mittelstand 4.0” . This network aims at enabling SMEs to implement efficient and effective processes along the value chain via digitalization and networking in the context of “Industrie 4.0”.

The cybernetic-cluster at RWTH Aachen University (consisting of the Institute of Information Management in Mechanical Engineering IMA, the Center for Learning and Knowledge Management ZLW, and the associated Institute for Management Cybernetics IfU) deals with a wide range of projects in the context of “Industrie 4.0”:



The Smart Automation Lab of the Laboratory for Machine Tools and Production Engineering (WZL) at RWTH Aachen University adresses diverse aspects of "Industrie 4.0" for enabling an individualized production in a heterogene production system.


In the BMBF-funded research project „Kollaborativ synchronisierte Fertigung“ („KoSyF“), the WZL aims at analyzing and optimizing the planning and control of a synchronized and individualized production which focuses on the integration of dispersed expert knowledge.


In the DFG-funded research project “Quality Intelligence” the WZL researches the target-oriented utilization of data for process quality improvements in the individualized production.