Accelerate product development and commissioning

digital twin
Accelerate product development and commissioning



Source: press release

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With the support of the Solid System Team (SST), Hymmen GmbH Maschinen- und Anlagenbau implemented the virtual commissioning using the digital twin. This allows the company to reduce costs and shorten the commissioning time of the systems.

Mechatronics Concept Designer can be used to simulate Hymmen GmbH’s complex printing and pressing systems, including the automation technology.

(Image: Hymmen GmbH machine and plant construction)

Hymmen specializes in production technology for large-scale production of panel-shaped materials and surface treatment of panels and webs. The special machine manufacturer in Bielefeld develops, among other things, printing, press and thermolamination systems as well as coating lines, which are also to be put into operation virtually as part of its digitization strategy. Since setting up and testing the systems is very complex and expensive due to their dimensions, Hymmen is dependent on digital systems. With the help of simulations on the digital twin, it can be seen early in the development process whether the planned machine really meets the requirements, whether the components and drives are correctly designed or whether the control technology is working correctly.

The Solid System team was responsible for advising, developing and implementing an integrated solution based on the Mechatronics Concept Designers (MCD) from Siemens NX, as Hymmen CEO Thomas Eikelmann reports: “For us, the MCD is the central building block for to realize a digital twin and the virtual commissioning of our printing and press systems. We are also taking this step in the digital transformation together with the Solid System team.”

Combination of CAD software and Mechatronics Concept Designer

The integrated solution consists of the Solid Edge CAD system, the Mechatronics Concept Designer, the NX CAD system and the connection to the automation technology.
The integrated solution consists of the Solid Edge CAD system, the Mechatronics Concept Designer, the NX CAD system and the connection to the automation technology.

(Image: Hymmen GmbH machine and plant construction)

The newly introduced NX CAD with its add-on Mechatronics Concept Designer could be easily implemented into the existing engineering landscape in addition to Solid Edge. Due to the direct integration, there are no media breaks. After 3D engineering of the machines and the entire system, all components are read and kinematized directly in NX and Mechatronics Concept Designer. This is where the physics-based simulation takes place, where, for example, friction, weights or densities are defined.

An interface also connects various additional modules, as Jan Henrik Ostmeier, head of project engineering in Hymmen, explains: “These are behavioral models where individual components are simulated, but also a communication simulation, a simulation of the classic control cabinet, so you are talking Inverter, motor control and so on. In addition, the PLC program is linked to the physics-based simulation, and the I/O contained therein is created from our electrotechnical tool Eplan. After all, our visualization is also connected to the virtual commissioning.”

Consistently from engineering to automation

The controllers from Siemens and Beckhoff can already be designed during virtual commissioning with MCD. Because the solution is connected to the automation software – the TIA portal for the Siemens PLCs and TwinCAT for the Beckhoff PLCs. The hymn can, for example, virtually program the robots used and adjust them correctly to avoid collisions during later operation and thus expensive repairs.

In general, the printing and pressing systems can be tested much more qualified and cheaper with the virtual commissioning on the digital twin. This also reduces the travel times and the costs for the actual commissioning of the machine, which is not insignificant for Hymmen customers spread all over the world. They also benefit from the digital twin approach because Hymmen can use the Mechatronics Concept Designer to determine the lead times of its systems in advance and make one or two adjustments before delivery. n

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