MADE Competence Center Industria 4.0, born from the synergy of 48 partners and an investment of €22 million, is an environment dedicated to manufacturing SMEs to bring them on the path of digital transformation: 20 demonstrators explaining the use of digital technologies in the factory, classrooms for training, co-working spaces and events. 

To inform and show the technologies of Industry 4.0 through ad-hoc training activities, in order to transfer and increase technological solutions with concrete projects. 

This is the modus operandi of MADE, the Competence Center from Lombardia for Industry 4.0 based in Milan Via Durando 10, Bovisa, which today opens the doors of its 2,500-square-meter Learning Factory to preview the activities that will be carried out inside through some use cases. 

Thanks to the common vision of 48 partners – 43 private companies, 4 universities, 1 public institution and with the support of the Ministry of Economic Development – and an investment of €22 million, MADE will make its headquarters a true Digital and Sustainable Factory, a platform of resources to bring Italian SMEs into contact with 4.0 technologies, helping and supporting them along the path of technological transition. 

The environment is divided into 20 demonstrators, each of them is dedicated to a specific 4.0 Technology: from collaborative robotics to big data, from remote maintenance to digital twin, from energy efficiency to industrial cyber-security, from Lean 4.0 to Additive manufacturing, from Artificial Intelligence to IoT and 5G networking. 

Demonstrators are amalgamated into specific areas of expertise, all of which are integrated and interconnected together to create an ideal, digital and sustainable factory: 

  • Virtual design and New Product Development, 

  • Digital Twin,Virtual commissioning, Lean manufacturing, 

  • Collaborative Robotics and Intelligent Worker Assistance Systems, 

  • Quality 4.0, Product tracking and Additive manufacturing, 

  • Smart monitoring and control of industrial processes, Smart energy monitoring and control, smart maintenance 

  • Industrial Cyber security and Big Data Analytics 

All MADE’s activities will focus on this factory of the future: from orientation services for companies to delve into the various pieces of the 4.0 system, to training activities for those companies that want to approach the enabling technologies for Industry 4. 0 directly at the demonstrators, through the learning factory approach, i.e., the experiential use of real plants; to the more advanced companies, which intend to implement 4.0 and find in MADE Competence Center Industry 4.0 a system of platforms and resources to draw on for “proof of concept” and projects. 

 The Digital and Sustainable Factory, after the renovation of the facility, has been set up over the past few months, overcoming the difficult moments related to the pandemic and succeeding in transferring technologies and skills to be able to present companies with a vision of the future, touch and test the technologies that will make it possible. Given the moment the country is experiencing, this will also contribute to the economic growth of the productive fabric and the competitiveness of companies, especially SMEs. 

Made is already organizing orientation seminars and webinars for users and Italian companies, with the involvement of its partners (“from businesses for businesses”) and several strategic alliances with trade associations, such as Confindustria and its territorial expression (Digital Innovation Hub), and vertical ones (which include manufactures and users of industrial machines), Unioncamere( the Chambers of Commerce with Entrepreneurial Points, Confartigianato, CNA e Federlegno. From May to the end of November there were 60 events with more than 3,000 participants and others are already planned.  

At the same time, MADE is implementing 19 projects related to the first call promoted earlier this year for ‘innovation, research, industrial and experimental development projects on Industry 4.0 topics.’  71 applicants from different industries participated: 60 % are based in Lombardy and 40 % are from the rest of the country. Among these projects, which are 50% subsidized and have a total value of 3 million, some are close to the end and others are still in progress. They range from collaborative robotics projects and intelligent work assistance systems to prevent risks of accidents at work, as well as process analysis to prevent production defects; to additive manufacturing and IoT (remote control) in the medical field; to remote maintenance and wear and tear prevention thanks to Quality 4.0 and additive manufacturing; through Artificial Intelligence and deep learning for the realization of algorithms that are able to identify intervention points within an industrial process of human-machine collaboration. Those mentioned are just some of the ongoing projects but MADE is already thinking about the second call that it will launch early next year. 

In addition, to meet the financial needs of businesses, especially in the current situation, MADE is offering on the one hand support on subsidized finance for investment, planning, and training (which will take on considerable momentum according to the current indications for the Budget Law 2021) and on the other hand has a framework agreement with Intesa Sanpaolo regarding financing opportunities for investment in research and innovation for MADE’s partner companies and those that will apply to the Competence Center.  

MADE’s partners, supported by the Ministry of Economic Development, include four universities in Lombardy, a public body, research centers and numerous companies: Adecco Formazione, Aizoon, Alleantia, Altair, Alumotion, Beckhoff, BIP, Bosch, Brembo, Cefriel, Celada, Cisco, Comau, CSMT Polo Tecnologico, Consoft Sistemi, Enginsoft, ECOLE , Fincons Group, FPT Industrial, GI Group, Hitachi Rail, Hyperlean, IBM, INAIL, Italtel, Kilometro Rosso, Kuka, MBDA, Politecnico di Milano, Prima Industrie, PTC, Quin, Reply, Rockwell Automation, SAP, SEW Eurodrive, Siemens, Smart NDT, STMicroelectronics, Techedge, Tesar, T4V, the University of Bergamo, Brescia and Pavia, Warrant Hub, Whirpool. 

Seminars and webinars organized by the competence center deal with numerous topics, and a calendar of events scheduled for next year will be available on the MADE website, www.made-cc.eu. The topics covered so far range from Industrial Smart Working 4.0 (to manage production flexibly, including remotely, with a new model that ensures continuity but also collaboration with operators) to Industrial Internet of Things (to understand what it is and why it is important to use it on the factory floor), from predictive maintenance in Industry 4. 0 (to understand the evolution of smart maintenance and how it impacts productivity) to Industrial Artificial Intelligence (the possible applications on the factory floor and the main evolutions with Machine Learning), from Big Data Analytics in the manufacturing industry (the benefits it brings, how data is developed and what are the techniques and methods to analyze it) to Cloud Computing for Industry 4.0 (the hardware and software resources to provide on-demand services remotely via the Internet). 

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