The ambition of Arrowhead flexible Production Value Network (fPVN) project is doubling the European industrial productivity by applying transformative, autonomous, and evolvable information interoperability for resilient and adaptive production value networks. The project will create true value from interoperability by providing autonomous and evolvable interoperability of information through machine-interpretable content for fPVN stakeholders. The resulting technology is projected to substantially impact manufacturing productivity and flexibility.
The objective is that fPVN information interoperability will be achieved in the whole range starting from the individual legacy, IoT-devices to complex systems of cyber-physical systems. This must happen within and between the involved stakeholders of the fPVN. Flexible PVN interoperability needs to be addressed with a life cycle mindset and an overarching evolvable value network (architecture/context). This contrasts with the current state-of-the-art solutions which focus on specific applications, technologies, or context.
Consequently, the Arrowhead fPVN consortium has identified the following three technology pillars a combination of which can substantially boost the interoperability in PVNs:
• Microservice paradigm – an open, extensible solution architecture with reference implementation
plat- form enabling seamless information interoperability between involved entities, operational technologies (OT) and information technology (IT).
• Major industrial data models (preferably standardized) – promoting the data models of a few
major standards, between which autonomous translation is enabled and integrated, to automation/digitalization solutions using microservice architecture and associated implementation platform.
• Automated translations between data/information models – automated information model translation between the major data modelling languages enabling on the fly understanding of the entities in PVNs.
These three technology pillars constitute the common Arrowhead fPVN technology. The validation and verification of the three building blocks will be verified using concrete industrial use-cases.
Value networks spans from materials, energy, semiconductor equipment, packaging material and logistics to the development of sophisticated software solutions for embedded systems and complex SoS. Further, there are many sub value-networks, or sub-PVNs, which cover many technologies and applications where great leaps are to come. However, the value network alone is not enough to achieve greater benefits and to support the European business actions. Here, cross-domain and highly interoperable PVNs will play significant role and the project assembles partners from the whole ECS value network and its primary application markets domains while these markets domains provide essential supply to the core ECS value network. Hence, the common technology will be validated and verified in 8 use cases covering the production value networks in the following industrial production domains:
• Automotive services
• Aerospace services
• Green energy conversion, and
• Process industry production.
Implementation and exploitation will rely on successful demonstrations of use-cases and the associated common technology verification and validation
The interoperability, offered by Arrowhead fPVN, aims at making enterprises more agile in collaborating with each other by facilitated swift and secure information exchange, enabling flexible production value networks. Therefore, the Arrowhead fPVN technology directly contributes to making the European industry more flexible and adaptable to withstand the grand challenges related to the consequences of the current and future cataclysms, e.g., the pandemics, the war in Ukraine and other potential conflicts, causing disrupted supply chains, global shortage of electronic components, food, and the energy crisis.
The consortia consist of partners that provide technology competence, exploitation ambition and capacity and standardization ambitions and capacity. The consortia very well reflect the current market production value networks in five production domains addressed through 11 use cases. Overall, the Arrowhead fPVN consortia does have 42 partners from 11 countries with industrial partners in a clear majority. The Arrowhead fPVN consortium is clearly industry driven where exploitation will be pushed by several large enterprises. In summary, the results are expected to considerably impact the efficiency of both local and global production value networks thanks to substantial cost and time reduction for setting up, operating, and managing the interactions within production value networks.