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The driving force behind assembly lines

The assembly lines of the future are connected, digital and lean. Products find their own way through manufacturing and AMRs transport material to the right place at the right time. But none of this is possible without the relevant technology that enables and supports these types of processes. The IndraDrive system and the ultra-compact ctrlX CORE control system not only enable users to carry out tasks with low-to-medium power consumption but also allow them to execute sophisticated and innovative applications.

The pace of assembly lines is constantly ramping up. Products are becoming more and more complex, work steps are increasing and cycle times are getting tighter. As a result, operators and end customers need solutions that can fulfill these requirements and unlock new levels of efficiency.

Bosch Rexroth’s new ultra-compact ctrlX CORE is a modern control system that can, for example, be combined with the drive technology IndraDrive or the cabinet-free version IndraDrive Mi. Both standard and high-end applications can be executed with the IndraDrive control sections. They offer integrated motion logic, numerous technology functions, certified safety technology and standardized, open interfaces for global usage. The control sections differ in terms of their performance, function and configuration, and can be combined with coordinated firmware versions and control panels. Impressively, this can result in streamlined processes as well as space savings in the sense of lean manufacturing as less space is required and less wiring is needed.

Open control for cabinet-free drive technology

When combined with the ultra-compact ctrlX CORE control system from the ctrlX AUTOMATION platform’s range, the IndraDrive technology benefits from open control technology that is ready for whatever the future has in store. The full, end-to-end solution is ideal for assembly lines that operate at a fast pace and involve transport between stations – with transfer systems and interlinking or even AMRs such as the ActiveShuttle mobile robot – and for the integration of subsystems.

The Linux-based ctrlX CORE is able to meet the increasing demand for modularization and standardization. It is the industry’s most complete, flexible and open control platform and boasts numerous benefits at every level – from design and performance to software and connectivity. The control platform works with app technology. As such, users have the flexibility to develop apps for special applications – for example mechatronic subsystems – with their own process know-how or download them from third-party providers. By way of example, Bosch Rexroth has made an image processing solution for object recognition and handling easy to access by making the HD Vision app available for download in the ctrlX World ecosystem.

Centralized implementation of new functions and safety

The free choice of programming languages and the ability to incorporate third-party software accelerate the engineering involved, and standards are easier to implement. Thanks to the encapsulation of functionality, the automation interface makes engineering easy.

All apps available via the ctrlX World ecosystem can be assigned to the compact control system and updated via the ctrlX Device Portal. The ctrlX Device Portal can also be used for the centralized management of controls across plants. Customers can set up their own “tenant” here. A range of different functions are available for the automation part in the form of apps – from the Standard app to the Motion app.  What’s more, graphical sequential function charts, classic PLC programming, high-level languages and many other languages can be used, which, for example, helps to considerably simplify the automation task at hand.

All of this can also be combined with ctrlX SAFETY – the most responsive and most compact safety solution available on the market. As such, impressive safety and efficient engineering are achieved through graphic programming of the safety PLC.

This product match is a prime example of the many possibilities that Bosch Rexroth’s product ranges open up. As such, users can implement and tailor the modularization, standardization and scalable performance required in assembly lines to meet their specific needs.

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Portrait view of Monika Metz, Game Changer New Markets

Monika Metz

Game Changer
New Markets



The future of automation – Part 3

Like many other sectors, the industry is in the midst of change. Increasing digitalization and networking give rise to new technologies and processes, but, above all, create significant potential for automation and optimization.

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