Smart sensors for the smart factory

In the factory of the future, all processes will be networked. Machines in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) will organize their own production orders. The basis of the smart factory will be high-performance, intelligent sensors: Only they can process the big data volumes of Industry 4.0 applications. ASC has developed a series of smart sensors for the digital factory. They not only allow custom-tailored production processes, but also condition monitoring, predictive maintenance, and the virtual design and initial operation of machines.

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Digital Twin

Digital Twins are brought to life using real sensor data. The smart sensor systems ASC AiSys® are converting the acquired raw data to information which are accessible by Digital Twins though flexible interfaces. Due to the integration of functionalities and features regarding data analyses directly in the smart sensor systems ASC AiSys® the overall system is significantly simplified.

Applications in the automation technology

Continuous monitoring of the condition of machines and systems is the heart of the smart factory. Condition monitoring allows companies to notice even the smallest deviations in their machine park so they can initiate maintenance tasks before expensive downtimes occur.

Intelligent sensors from ASC perform all measurement and analysis of the accumulated data. This means that the user needs no additional data acquisition systems or costly analyses. Our sensors inform the machine operator on time if action is necessary

Ideal sensors for use in condition monitoring also include our piezoelectric accelerometers ASC P311K-A15 (side-connector) and ASC P311K-A25 (top-connector) and the triaxial ASC P313P-A15. They are ideal for industrial applications – compact, very robust, and designed for customization.

Smart sensors from ASC create the conditions necessary for the “digital twin”. A digital twin is a virtual or digital model of a real machine. It enables computer modelling of the machine and its components, on the basis of all geometric, kinematic and logic data from the real machine.

In the planning phase, the digital twin eliminates the need for costly prototypes, since the effects of design alternatives can be observed virtually in simulations and tests.

Significant reductions in costs and development times are the result. In the later phases of the machine’s life cycle, digital twins serve as a basis for boosting availability, for example by condition based monitoring or predictive maintenance.

Automated guided vehicles (AGVs) perform a key function in Industry 4.0 applications in the smart factory: They connect production lines with each other to boost the efficiency of intralogistics processes. However, this requires that the vehicles reach their destination safely and via the shortest route.

High-precision inertial sensors from ASC enable reliable vehicle dynamics as well as precise navigation of AGVs to ensure the smooth flow of materials.

Especially suitable for automated guided vehicles are the compact gyroscopes ASC 271 (uniaxial) and ASC 273 (triaxial) as well as inertial measurement units. The gyroscopes detect the angular rate of the vehicles, which makes them ideal for optimization of curve speed.

If linear components also need to be monitored, use of the ASC IMU 7 is recommended. This is the case, for example, in controlling vehicle behavior during acceleration and braking.

Intelligent sensors from ASC are the basis for establishing self-optimizing control loops in the smart factory. They ensure that production always takes place at the best possible level. Smart sensors differ from conventional models especially in their ability to process data independently.

This is necessary because applications such as machine learning generate big data volumes, which could hardly be handled by external data systems without pre-processing.

In predictive maintenance, algorithms analyze the machine data collected by smart sensor systems ASC AiSys® ECO 3321. The result is a prediction about which components will need to be replaced soon. This allows companies to plan the maintenance of their systems exactly in order to prevent unplanned downtimesSmart sensor solutions from ASC, with their high-precision measurement of smallest vibrations, are essential for such forecasts, because the success of predictive maintenance depends mainly on the quality of the sensor systems. High-precision, intelligent sensors are decisive for the cost effectiveness and operational quality of industrial applications.

Robots no longer operate only in isolated cages, but increasingly as cobots, side by side with their human colleagues. To prevent the danger of collisions, the working area of robots must be monitored continuously.

Smart sensors from ASC are ideal for this task, because they detect even the smallest motions. If a defined safety distance to humans is violated, the sensors send a status signal to the higher-level controller, which immediately stops the cobot.

Initial operation of machines is very time consuming. A digital twin makes it possible to carry out this process on a computer, which is must faster. Engineers no longer have to travel to the customer’s location, which reduces project costs.

Smart sensors from ASC enable virtual initial operation and therefore significantly boost the efficiency of the machine component.

Custom solutions

Our development engineers are more than happy to take on the challenge of developing custom solutions for special assignments, even for low-volume series.


Press: Köhler + Partner GmbH




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ASC 4211LN

Uniaxial, capacitive
Measurement range: ±2 to ±400 g
Noise density: 7 to 400 µg/√Hz
Frequency range (±5 %): DC to 2000 Hz

ASC 5525MF

Triaxial, capacitive
Measurement range: ±2 to ±200 g
Noise density: 10 to 680 µg/√Hz
Frequency range (±5 %): DC to 2900 Hz