German Chancellor Merkel announces visit to Bosch Rexroth booth
Simple machine control thanks to open core engineering
Efficient small-scale power stations for decentralized electricity supply
Early detection of faults ensures higher machine availability
Hannover/Stuttgart – At this year’s Hannover trade fair from April 7 – 11, the Bosch Group will be presenting an extensive range of networking and process optimization solutions for industrial facilities and building complexes of all sorts. “Our innovations in areas such as smart factories and the internet of things make it quite clear that we are one of the industrial sector’s leading providers of both hardware and software,” said the Bosch management board member Dr. Werner Struth. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced that she will be visiting the Bosch Rexroth booth (hall 17, booth B38) at 9:50 a.m. on April 7.
Bosch will be represented in Hannover by Bosch Rexroth, Bosch Thermotechnology, Bosch Energy and Building Solutions, and Bosch Software Innovations. One highlight the company will be presenting is a special automation solution that has been nominated for the 2014 Robotics Award.
Bosch Rexroth simplifies the exchange of data Production control, traceability, quality assurance, and the vision of connected production are together driving an ever greater flow of information from automation to the world of IT and back. With its open core engineering interface technology, Bosch Rexroth makes this exchange much simpler. Users can now access all their machine controls and drives directly from their usual IT programs and languages, with no need for specialist knowledge. This reduces the effort required and increases the flexibility to use any program for demand-driven gathering and evaluation of production data beyond the field of machine automation. At its trade fair booth, Bosch Rexroth will be presenting a concept study for an assembly line that has no higher-level control system; instead, as they pass along it, parts say what needs to be done to them at each processing station. The station’s decentralized intelligence detects what kind of processing a custom product requires at any given step, with data determining for instance what color of plastic part should be fitted. In a real production environment, this kind of line will be capable of producing a wide variety of extremely complex products.
Efficient power supplies for large and small buildings Bosch Thermotechnology will have a presence in hall 27, booth J50, on the decentralized power supply booth organized jointly by Deutsche Messe and the German combined heat and power association of the German electrical and electronics industry association (ZVEI). There, it will be exhibiting a large containerized cogeneration system and an organic Rankine cycle plant. One such plant is in operation at the Flörsheim mineral landfill site close to Frankfurt, where it is recovering the hitherto untapped waste heat from a cogeneration plant and using it to generate electricity. Bosch developed this innovative solution and installed it on the grounds of the landfill site. A smaller modular cogeneration unit suitable for business premises or buildings housing two to six families will also be on display. The decentralized, combined generation of heat and power offers a high level of overall efficiency and thus has an important part to play in any smart energy system.
Bosch Energy and Building Solutions will also be on the joint decentralized power supply booth. Experts from the energy efficiency service provider will be on hand to explain how to spot potential savings – whether in space or process heating, cooling, air conditioning, compressed air, or lighting – and thus optimize the power demand of commercial building complexes. The company achieves an average energy saving of 20 percent through a combination of tailored energy concepts, services, and modern technology.
The joint fuel cell initiative booth in hall 27, booth E51, is where Bosch Thermotechnology will be presenting the Buderus Logapower FC10 fuel cell heater. This system for decentralized generation of heat and power for single- and twin-family homes is based on a solid oxide fuel cell with an operating temperature of 700°C. It achieves an electrical efficiency of over 40 percent, which makes it more efficient than other decentralized CHP plants. The system can bring the cost of electricity in a single- or twin-family building down by 25 to 40 percent. At the same time, it lowers CO2 emissions by up to 50 percent compared to conventionally generated heat and power.
Early detection makes maintenance easier and increases productivity Preventive maintenance: As machines and computers become increasingly networked, the prospects for maintenance are particularly exciting. Visitors to the booth of Bosch Software Innovations, the Bosch Group’s software and systems unit, will be able to experience a live demonstration of how the right software can precisely predict faults in an industrial machine. This means unplanned down times are avoided, maintenance and repair costs are optimized, and overall productivity is increased. Bosch Software Innovations is represented at the BITKOM booth in hall 7, booth C04.
“APAS assistant” mobile automation solution Bosch’s “APAS assistant,” its automated production assistant, has been nominated for the 2014 Robotics Award. This award for innovative robot systems is presented by the Hannover trade fair, Industrieanzeiger magazine, and the Robotation Academy. Its patron is Lower Saxony’s minister for economic affairs, labor, and transport, Olaf Lies. An independent jury assesses new technologies that are applied in areas such as industrial automation.
“APAS assistant” is mobile and flexible and forms part of the “APAS family” of ready-to-go automation solutions. It has a “sensor skin” that enables it to avoid collisions. This is why it is the first robot system to be certified for collaborative operations – without the need for any other protective precautions – by the German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV) association. The “APAS family” is rounded off by “APAS inspector,” a mobile optical inspection system, and “APAS base,” a flexible automation platform. Together these systems offer a glimpse of the technologies that will be put to work in tomorrow’s connected “Industry 4.0.” In these flexible, networked smart factories, people, machines, and products will all communicate with each other and work together more closely.
The 2014 Robotics Award will be presented in hall 17, booth G24 (Forum Robotics, Automation, and Vision) between 3:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. on Tuesday, April 8, 2014. The “APAS family” can be found in hall 17, booth D17. More details on the “APAS family” are available online at http://www.bosch-apas.com.
The Netherlands is the partner country of this year’s Hannover trade fair Under the heading “Global Challenges, Smart Solutions,” the Netherlands will be presenting solutions to the industrial challenges of the future. Bosch has been represented in the Netherlands since 1903, and there are currently some 3,600 people working for the company at 16 locations there. The most important plants are in Tilburg, Boxtel, Deventer, Weert, and Schiedam. All four Bosch business sectors are active in the country: Automotive Technology, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology.
The Dutch mechanical engineering sector is made up of more than 2,600 medium sized enterprises. Bosch Rexroth is involved in numerous machine concepts and major projects in the country, acting as development and system partner for the entire automation process. Its projects range from the nanometer-scale positioning of electronic circuits to lifting machinery for offshore platforms weighing over 48,000 tons.
Employers should meet the needs of both younger and older employees
Bosch to hire 800 university graduates in Germany
Global workforce expected to grow by some 9,000 associates
Work-life balance a competitive advantage
Stuttgart – “If companies want to remain competitive in the labor market of the future, they must meet the needs of both younger and older employees,” said Christoph Kübel, member of the board of management and director of industrial relations at Robert Bosch GmbH, during a presentation to members of Stuttgart’s business and political communities. In a keynote speech on the working world of 2020, he emphasized the importance of work-life balance. “Flexible and varied working models can help avert the shortage of specialists and improve career prospects for women and older employees,” Kübel said. Such models will allow companies to keep important employees on board for a longer period of time, and to make management positions more attractive to women. According to Kübel, a good work-life balance stimulates employee creativity appreciably. Especially in the technical professions, women have yet to gain a strong enough foothold in specialist and management jobs.
No shortage of specialists at Bosch: 800 university graduates wanted According to a Robert Bosch Stiftung study that Kübel cited, Germany’s population will likely decrease from 82 million today to 71 million by 2050. For this reason, the Bosch board member sees lifelong learning and occupational health management as two core building blocks of future HR policy. According to Kübel, both will make it easier to maintain the mental and physical performance of today’s workforce for a longer time. In a connected industrial world, the need for low-skilled workers will decrease. For this reason, Bosch offers programs that aim to provide such workers with specialist qualifications. Specialists, in turn, are given opportunities to gain engineering skills. “At Bosch, we have yet to feel the impact of the shortage of specialists. This year, we expect to add another 9,000 associates to our global workforce. The Asia Pacific growth region will see the biggest increase.” The company plans to welcome new associates in Germany as well: “This year, we are planning to hire some 800 university graduates at Bosch locations in Germany. In addition, we expect to offer places for 1,400 new apprentices across the country.”
According to Kübel, policymakers also play an important role in shaping the working world of the future. In particular, a retirement policy that promotes a healthier and longer life for many employees can help ensure that the demand for specialists is met in the future. A move away from a culture that makes on-site work mandatory can also help achieve a healthy work-life balance. This, in turn, also helps keep employees healthy. At the same time, expanding the number of daycare facilities and all-day schools will reduce the burden on working parents and open up professional opportunities.
Waiblingen/Stuttgart – Bosch Packaging Technology continued growing faster than the packaging machinery industry in 2013, breaking the one-billion-euro sales mark for the first time. “We are exactly on track,” said Friedbert Klefenz, President of Bosch Packaging Technology. The company increased its sales in fiscal 2013 from 914 million euros to 1.1 billion euros, a rise of 22 percent. Adjusted for consolidation effects, that equates to growth of 6.4 percent. Leaving aside exchange rate effects, internal growth at Packaging Technology reached ten percent. By comparison, figures from the German association of mechanical engineers (VDMA) put growth in the German packing machinery industry at only four percent. In 2013, the company employed around 5,600 people at over 30 locations, 12 percent more than in the previous year. Bosch Packaging Technology, a market leader in processing and packaging solutions, will present details of its performance in 2013 at its annual press conference. Date:
May 8, 2014, 10:00 a.m. at Interpack trade fair in Düsseldorf, Germany
“We expect to maintain our growth rate in the current business year as well and reach the target we have set ourselves of 1.5 billion euros in sales by 2015,” stated Klefenz. Bosch Packaging Technology is among the fastest-growing divisions of the Bosch Group. In addition to its main markets of Europe and North America, the company posted above-average growth in Asia, while the markets of Africa and the Middle East continue to gain in importance as well.
Protecting food with state-of-the-art packaging technology One of Bosch Packaging Technology's growth drivers is its pharmaceuticals segment, which is profiting from the burgeoning global growth of this industry. “This clearly shows that ever more people around the world are gaining access to pharmaceutical products, and that can be traced back to growth in the market for generic drugs,” said Klefenz. What is more, the growing use of appropriate packaging is helping improve global food supplies. “We’re proud that our technology can make a contribution toward improving people's quality of life,” explained Klefenz. Worldwide, almost a third of all food produced is lost before it reaches consumers, and missing or inadequate packaging is one of the causes. That is why Bosch Packaging Technology was among the founding members of the United Nations' SAVE FOOD initiative launched at the Interpack trade fair in Düsseldorf in 2011.
Instead of site closure, good prospects for great majority of associates
Consummation of purchase agreement signed in November 2013
Bosch service organization and trading company have begun operations
Stuttgart/Arnstadt – The deal under which the production of crystalline photovoltaic cells and modules in Arnstadt will be sold by Bosch to SolarWorld has been closed. All the conditions for consummating the purchasing agreement signed in November 2013 have been fulfilled, including the approval of the antitrust authorities and the conclusion of a reconciliation of interests for the Bosch Solar Energy associates transferring to SolarWorld Industries-Thüringen GmbH. The parties have agreed not to disclose any details of contractual conditions.
In total, 1,000 of the currently 1,400 jobs at the Arnstadt location have been preserved. “We have achieved our goal of selling parts of the operation and relocating an alternative Bosch business, and in this way of offering jobs to as many associates as possible,” said Dr. Volkmar Denner, Chairman of the Board of Management of Robert Bosch GmbH. “In this way, we can offer a perspective for the large majority of associates instead of closing the site. We have invested a lot of time and considerable sums of money in making this possible.”
In addition to the roughly 800 associates who are transferring to SolarWorld, Bosch will employ a total of roughly 250 associates at the Arnstadt location. The Bosch service organization and trading company have already commenced operations. From the autumn of 2014, Bosch will also be manufacturing an automotive electronic product in Arnstadt. The preliminary preparations are currently underway.
In addition, negotiations are being held with the employee representatives to discuss the reconciliation of interests and social compensation plan for those associates not transferring to SolarWorld Industries-Thüringen GmbH.
Despite increased efforts by Bosch, together with the Thuringian government and state development corporation, the potential investor from the pharmaceuticals industry has abandoned its original plans to manufacture in Arnstadt, citing business reasons.
For the module plant in Vénissieux, France, it is planned to offer a comparable solution to the one for Arnstadt. Talks with a potential investor have now reached an advanced stage.
On February 5, 2014, aleo solar AG, based in Oldenburg and Prenzlau, Germany, signed an agreement to sell its module production in Prenzlau to SCP Solar GmbH. SCP Solar GmbH is a joint venture of the Taiwanese company Sunrise Global Solar Energy Co., Ltd., the Japanese company CHOSHU Industry Co., Ltd., and the U.K.-based Pan Asia Solar, Ltd. The buyer will also take over the “aleo” brand, and intends to create jobs for roughly 200 associates. As the main shareholder (90.7 percent stake), Bosch is providing finance to help aleo put this deal into practice. The aleo board of management has examined several options, including completely winding up the business operations. To give roughly 200 associates the chance of finding employment with the acquiring company, Bosch is accepting additional costs for this transaction running into seven figures. Financially, a complete winding up would have been the far more favorable option. Bosch is providing aleo with financial support for the transaction and for dissolving the residual business not included in the transation. This means that the bankruptcy of aleo can be avoided. The transaction is subject to approval by general shareholders meeting and the antitrust authorities, among other things.