Digital ecosystems centre stage 12 February 2020

For 2020 HANNOVER MESSE will have a revamped layout, making it even quicker for visitors to zero in on the key industrial transformation technologies of greatest interest to them. The focal point of the show’s industrial transformation message is the ‘digital ecosystems showcase’ covering the full range of software for every link in the industrial value chain.

Taking place from 20th – 24th April 2020, the digital ecosystems showcase will be strategically located at the heart of the venue – in halls 14 through 17 – where it will enjoy thematic synergies with various other themes in the neighboring halls.

Processes and technologies that up until quite recently were regarded as separate and distinct will be showcased together in an integrated overview of process flows and solutions. “In the current age of Industry 4.0, the focus is on flexible manufacturing, standalone yet integrated machines and systems, and autonomous exchanges of process information. The key to it all is the software that maps and manages these processes. At HANNOVER MESSE, all theme areas relevant to this will be clustered in the ‘digital ecosystems’ display,” said Hubertus von Monschaw, global director digital ecosystems at Deutsche Messe.

Among the exhibitors in this part of the show will be Amazon Web Services, Cisco, Dassault, EPLAN, HUAWEI, Microsoft, PSI, SAP, Siemens PLM, Software AG and Telekom. There will also be a number of prominent newcomers such as Google, proAlpha, McAfee and Knapp. Their displays will span a range of themes, including predictive maintenance, machine learning, MES (manufacturing execution systems), logistics (WMS and TMS), data analytics, CAD (computer aided design), PLM (product lifecycle management), business platforms, ERP (enterprise resource planning) for real time monitoring, virtual/augmented reality and industrial security.

At HANNOVER MESSE 2019, these themes attracted over 100,000 visitors. One key aspect common to all of them is increasing convergence of applications and technologies. MES and data analytics are a case in point. Manufacturing execution systems (also known as production control systems) are able to function reliably only if their future performance can be predictively modelled and analysed using appropriate data analytics – so that improvements and checks can be undertaken as appropriate.

The convergence of once separate areas of technology is also very clear from CAD, PLM and business platforms. Whereas only a few years ago CAD software was primarily about designing individual workpieces and machine parts, there are now companies providing software platforms that model and manage entire value chains from design and parts procurement right through to final quality control.

ERP (enterprise resource planning) is another exciting focus of software convergence. At HANNOVER MESSE 2020, providers will present examples and use cases demonstrating how mechanical engineering and other firms can now leverage ERP tools in completely new ways. Predictive ERP, for example, is sparking more and more interest. It enables manufacturers to predict possible events and initiate the necessary measures and countermeasures. Integrated with the appropriate process models, predictive ERP systems can facilitate better decision making by running simulations of even the most complex scenarios.

Deputy Editor

Claire Aldridge Deputy Editor t: +44 (0) 1727 743 889


Having joined the magazine in 2012, Claire developed her knowledge of the industry through the numerous company visits, exhibitions and conferences she attended both in the UK and abroad.

Claire prides herself on keeping readers well informed and up to date with the latest industry news.