HxGN LIVE 2019: Making it smarter with Manufacturing Intelligence

As we wrapped on HxGN LIVE 2019, more than 3000 attendees headed for home equipped with four days’ worth of learning and new ideas. As Norbert Hanke observed in the Manufacturing Intelligence track keynote on Wednesday, 12 June, manufacturers come to HxGN LIVE to because they want to work smarter, so and the programme was full of content designed to help them do just that.

The Manufacturing Intelligence track got underway on Tuesday, 11 June, with a packed training programme from our manufacturing software portfolio. CAE solutions training ran in parallel with the PC-DMIS Users’ Group masterclasses, while users of our SURFCAM, EDGECAM and CABINET VISION production software solutions also enjoyed dedicated sessions throughout the week.

Following Tuesday’s opening keynote address from Hexagon President & CEO Ola Rollén, attendees headed to The Zone for their first look at the technology showcase. Manufacturers were invited to see Hexagon’s vision of the smarter manufacturing ecosystem through an augmented reality experience before getting hands-on with the design and engineering, production, and metrology solutions, and discussing ways to make factories, processes, and products smarter with our applications experts.

By Wednesday, the conference was in full swing, and Manufacturing Intelligence President Norbert Hanke took to the stage for his track keynote ‘Smart Is Hiding in Plain Sight’, inviting the audience to join him on a search for ‘smart’ — finding data in their factories and learning how to put it to work. Guest speaker Doug Woods, President of The Association For Manufacturing Technology, shared insights from his work with manufacturers around the world; reflecting on the state of the industry, its readiness (and willingness) to pursue a smart manufacturing strategy, and some of the new enabling technologies helping to make it happen. Picking up the enabling technology theme, Erik Josefsson, Vice President, Head of Advanced Industries at Ericsson, explained the six superpowers of 5G and what it will mean for factory connectivity. After the keynote it was straight into a packed schedule of breakout sessions as attendees continued their pursuit of smart — and finally the track attendees regrouped at the Beats & Eats networking event to compare notes and share more ideas.

The third annual Manufacturing Leadership Summit was again a big success this year. The goal of the summit is to offer a think-tank style experience for industry leaders to tackle some of the big issues in manufacturing — with some fun and good food mixed in. It’s a great opportunity for our customers to learn from each other, and for sure we always learn something from them! Representatives of Waymo, Ericsson, Lockheed Martin and Digital Alloys presented advanced manufacturing topics, challenging all of us to make it smarter. We learned from Ericsson that 5G is also referred to as NR, standing simply for ‘new radio’. The move towards autonomous was a recurring theme, and our guests discussed sensor technology for autonomous vehicles and other applications. The future of additive manufacturing was another big discussion point, and a lively final session considered how artificial intelligence will change quality management. Many new connections and ideas were generated during the programme and I’m sure that there’s some lasting relationships been forged during the course of the summit.

HxGN LIVE 2019 was a week of inspiration and innovation — I hope that all our attendees enjoy taking what they’ve learned back into their businesses and working out how they too can make it smarter.

Kate Bailey is the Global Marketing Communications Manager at Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence. She spent several years working as a creative agency copywriter before moving to Hexagon, where she gets to combine her writing skills with a long-standing fascination with engineering and technology.

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