Automation and control technology as a building block for sustainable production

Sustainability and climate protection are becoming increasingly important for consumers. The industry has a high influence on emissions, both in production and in product design. The Paris Climate Agreement and the emissions trading scheme adopted within the EU are motivating manufacturing companies to act more sustainably. Driven by the drive for innovation and research, automation in this context is to be understood as an enabler for concrete implementation and represents a building block for the production of more environmentally friendly goods. In the Department of Automation and Control Engineering at the Laboratory for Machine Tools and Production Engineering WZL at RWTH Aachen University, we deal with research topics such as circular economy, resource consumption and optimization in the field of ecological and economic sustainability. For this purpose, automation technology provides a basis for the development of flexible and innovative production concepts and supplies the necessary data basis for determining the resource consumption and ecological value of the product. The research results developed facilitate readiness for adaptation in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).