Siemens Digital Industries Software (SDIS) held its analyst/media event at the GM Renaissance in Detroit in April—the first face-to-face analyst/media event for the company since 2019.
Cedrik Neike, CEO of Siemens Digital Industries and managing board member of Siemens AG, focused on what actual problems Siemens is solving for its customers by combining the real and digital worlds through not only a digital transformation, but through building and implementing digital twins that enable their customers to design, manufacture, and service their products using a digital twin to continuously optimize the product and the production process. Neike presented several actual customer stories from industries like biotech and pharma to food and beverage to battery manufacturing. He pointed out that the most successful companies today are an integrated combination of hardware and software, an efficient blend of IT and OT. He noted that companies that started out as pure software companies like Microsoft, Amazon, Google, etc. are now highly invested in hardware, manufacturing, and operation. And that, he said, is where Siemens is today, from automation hardware and sensors to the edge and the cloud.
Neike also pointed out that an average Industry 4.0 factory generates two thousand terabytes of data per month, and most of that data is unused. Siemens’ vision and strategy is to use the entire digital thread across the design/manufacture/service lifecycle to build connected digital twins that begin to use this data to truly integrate IT and OT and beyond to the entire supply chain of industries. He maintains that Siemens is well on the way to making the transition from being an automation company and manufacturer to becoming a tech company.
Tony Hemmelgarn, CEO of Siemens Software, pointed out that the very nature of work has changed, and companies are changing their business models to reflect this. Companies want technology and solutions that enable them to become more agile, flexible, capable of reaching new markets, and equipped with a field work force with tools that make them smarter and more adaptable. One thing that Siemens offers their customers is tools and technology to implement comprehensive executable digital twins.
He pointed out that IT/OT convergence is being re-imagined and accomplished through the implantation of digital twins used to optimize production processes. He also noted that their customer Lockheed- Martin will use Siemens Xcelerator open integrated cloud services as the platform for all new aircraft development programs going forward. This will allow them to fully integrate their design/build/operate/ maintain development lifecycle and employ a model-based systems engineering for process improvement.
More than 97% of the Xcelerator portfolio is available in the cloud and is offered as a service through subscription, as well as on-premises to meet customer requirements. The digital thread connectivity of Xcelerator is enabling “shift-left engineering” where design engineers can apply downstream data, which includes Internet of Things and artificial intelligence data in the lifecycle to gain insight into a faster and more optimized design process. This is enabling companies to shift from being product companies to service companies. Xcelerator enables companies to remotely connect their design organizations and operate in real-time across the design/test/ validate product development lifecycle.