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Working together for openness in automation

WAGO is the first system and technology partner for the operating system ctrlX OS

  • Automation specialists are working together and driving openness
  • WAGO offers the operating system ctrlX OS on its own devices
  • Bosch Rexroth and WAGO are working in partnership to develop new sector-specific solutions

With its operating system ctrlX OS, Bosch Rexroth has caused a sensation within the market: The automation specialist has uncoupled the software from its own control hardware and made it available for the industrial environment. As a result, even competitors can use the Linux-based operating system for their own purposes and take on the role of a system and technology partner. WAGO has decided to go this route and is now helping to drive openness in automation as Bosch Rexroth's first partner in this area.

ctrlX OS is designed for real-time use and can be used on all levels – from the field level and edge devices to the cloud. With its radical openness, it removes all previous boundaries and creates new scope for action for users. By installing ctrlX OS, they gain access to the entire ecosystem. A huge range of apps is available for downloading from the ctrlX Store.

In the past, the operating system was used exclusively on the control system ctrlX CORE from the world of the automation toolkit ctrlX AUTOMATION. Now, Bosch Rexroth is opening it up as a separate solution for industrial use. This creates opportunities for collaboration that did not exist in the market until now.

New potential for everyone – with an operating system for automation

WAGO, a company which specializes in automation and connecting technologies, is the first system and technology partner to use the operating system from Bosch Rexroth. The two companies have been partners through their involvement in the ctrlX World for several months now. WAGO offers partners specific modules from its own I/O portfolio. The company will also be involved in the further development of the operating system ctrlX OS in the future. The initial focus will be on implementation on its own devices and application development for WAGO-specific applications based on ctrlX OS.

“The core of WAGO's product strategy is the implementation of ctrlX OS on the WAGO control platforms that we developed ourselves. The new technology enhances our product competence and at the same time we can develop market-specific solutions with our industry expertise. To round things off, we may also be able to integrate products and devices from the Bosch Rexroth portfolio into our own product range,” said Johannes Pfeffer, Vice President Business Unit Automation at WAGO.

WAGO already offers a well established, very successful automation system. It is made up of various classic controllers, couplers for connecting fieldbus and network protocols and a large number of I/O modules for almost every conceivable automation task. “We will continue to offer this control platform in the long term,” explained Johannes Pfeffer. He added: “In order to improve performance, we would like to rely on ctrlX OS in the long term in areas where moderate and high performance is required – i.e. where the handling of large volumes of data with great temporal accuracy and high IT security standards is required.”

Basis for automation in the software-driven factory

Working together, Bosch Rexroth and WAGO will simplify automation and, for example, develop industry-specific applications that can be accessed and used quickly.

Steffen Winkler, Vice President Sales Business Unit Automation & Electrification Solutions at Bosch Rexroth, explained: “WAGO customers increasingly need better performance and real-time capability when automating their industrial applications. However, they also need more IT security, better usability, easy expandability via software and even greater versatility when it comes to integrating sensors, protocols and standards into the automation level. With ctrlX OS, all of this can be achieved in next to no time.”

In addition, ctrlX OS offers a ready-made WAGO-specific store connection, a cloud-based device administration option and full access to the partner network ctrlX World.

The common goal of both companies is to create a world-leading automation platform for the software-driven Factory of the Future. “This sounds ambitious. But considering how fragmented and proprietary the industry still is, this is a realistic undertaking in the interest of customers. In concrete terms, it means making the platform available to as broad a group of users as possible. Both Bosch Rexroth and WAGO consider it essential to bring other system and technology partners for ctrlX OS on board. After all, open systems rely on large numbers of specialists participating and working together on the big picture,” said Steffen Winkler.

WAGO is the first system and technology partner based on the open operating system ctrlX OS.

As one of the world’s leading suppliers of drive and control technologies, Bosch Rexroth ensures efficient, powerful and safe movement in machines and systems of any size. The company bundles global application experience in the market segments of Mobile Applications, Machinery Applications and Engineering, and Factory Automation. With its intelligent components, customized system solutions and services, Bosch Rexroth is creating the necessary environment for fully connected applications. Bosch Rexroth offers its customers hydraulics, electric drive and control technology, gear technology and linear motion and assembly technology, including software and interfaces to the Internet of Things. With locations in over 80 countries, more than 31,000 associates generated sales revenue of around 6.2 billion euros in 2021.

To learn more, please visit www.boschrexroth.com

The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 420,000 associates worldwide (as of December 31, 2022). According to preliminary figures, the company generated sales of 88.4 billion euros in 2022. Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. As a leading IoT provider, Bosch offers innovative solutions for smart homes, Industry 4.0, and connected mobility. Bosch is pursuing a vision of mobility that is sustainable, safe, and exciting. It uses its expertise in sensor technology, software, and services, as well as its own IoT cloud, to offer its customers connected, cross-domain solutions from a single source. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to facilitate connected living with products and solutions that either contain artificial intelligence (AI) or have been developed or manufactured with its help. Bosch improves quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.” The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 440 subsidiary and regional companies in some 60 countries. Including sales and service partners, Bosch’s global manufacturing, engineering, and sales network covers nearly every country in the world. With its more than 400 locations worldwide, the Bosch Group has been carbon neutral since the first quarter of 2020. The basis for the company’s future growth is its innovative strength. At 128 locations across the globe, Bosch employs some 85,000 associates in research and development, of which nearly 44,000 are software engineers.

Additional information is available online at www.bosch.com, www.iot.bosch.com, www.bosch-press.com, www.twitter.com/BoschPress.

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Portrait view of Steffen Winkler, Game Changer ctrlX AUTOMATION

Steffen Winkler

Game Changer



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