Aalto University joins Reboot IoT Factory to reform industry with digital solutions – aiming at an impact of EUR 1 billion
Reboot IoT Factory is an ecosystem for the development of digital innovations with eight industrial plants and four research organisations involved. The major challenges of the manufacturing industry are identified together and dozens of innovative solutions are sought for testing, drawing on the expertise of more than 40 SMEs. The solutions may relate to, for example, delivery networks, robotics or digital production. They must be scalable, provide high added value and be suitable for the global market.
Productivity, production quality and reaction speed are key challenges in industry. “Finding innovative solutions to these challenges requires multidisciplinary research and active dialogue between academia and industry. At Aalto University, the Schools of Engineering, Electrical Engineering, and Science offer the latest scientific knowledge on industrial internet for the benefit of the ecosystem,” says Jari Juhanko, COO of Aalto Industrial Internet Campus.
Competitiveness improves, production has been returning to Finland
Reboot IoT Factory has quickly produced results. Previous 18 months have seen the development of 20 Proof of Concept (PoC) solutions, many of which will generate an estimated EUR 1 million in added value over their life cycle. The benefits are multiplied thanks to scalability. “Our goal is to develop 25 more PoC solutions in the next 18 months. In total, we are aiming at an impact of EUR 1 billion in Finnish industry by 2025 through commercial scalability of the results”, says the project’s coordinator Marko Jurvansuu from VTT.
For industrial plants, the results are already reflected in improved competitiveness. “Reboot increased our capacity in our product line with such extent that we can transfer more production to Finland", says Heli Huhtala, who leads the Reboot project at GE Healthcare Finland.
New markets for SMEs
Industrial plants and their networks constitute a significant market area for SMEs. There may also be opportunities for export on offer. “Thanks to the funding and cooperation model of the Reboot project, we have been able to launch bold product development projects. At the same time, we have discovered how wide a sector our IoT and VR/AR solutions are suitable for”, says Tatu Säisä from 3D Talo.
“The project has also enabled cooperation between companies of two different sizes in an interesting way. It is refreshing to see how many lessons from game development can be applied to the operations of traditional industry”, says co-founder Ville Herranen from Parta Games Oy.
Operating model reshapes working methods
The operating model supports the reshaping of traditional production methods towards knowledge-based work and the sharing of experiences between partners. More than 200 researchers have visited production facilities, encouraging the creation of innovations to meet the real needs of industry. Visits have also been carried out between production facilities, which has contributed to the spread of innovations. The cooperation between companies is exceptionally concrete and active. Most production facilities can utilise, for example, robotics in logistics and artificial intelligence in resourcing.
The consortium factories are ABB Protection & Connection (Vaasa), ABB Wiring Accessories (Porvoo), GE Healthcare (Vallila), Nokia (Oulu), Ponsse (Vieremä), KONGSBERG (Rauma), Scanfil (Sievi) and Sulzer (Kotka). The project is coordinated by VTT and University of Oulu with Aalto University and Åbo Akademi as other partners. The project's overall budget funded by Business Finland and the participating companies, research organisations and universities is over EUR 13 million. The Reboot operating model has also been adopted in other ecosystems. The second phase of the project will run from November 2019 to April 2021.