The factory of the future is already a reality at the Porsche sites in Leipzig and Zuffenhausen with white floors and state-of-the-art technology; futuristic-looking factories that sets benchmarks and leads the way into the future.
“Porsche Production 4.0” is a natural evolution of the current production system – a continuous improvement using new technologies and methods. Applications from the digital world are connected with the physical world. To this end, Porsche has defined six areas that continue to be developed on an ongoing basis: production system, resource efficiency, work organization, new technologies, digitalization and communication.
The modern one-line concept – a typical Porsche manufacturing philosophy – places the person at the center. The idea is for every employee to perform as many work steps as possible. In principle, any employee could be deployed anywhere in the plant. Porsche embraces the factory concept and uses robots to perform specific tasks where absolute repeatability is required. And in the ergonomically optimized engine plant assembly line all tools and processes are tailored towards supporting the employees in their work. In addition, the employees use wireless EC screwdrivers that know the exact torque curves defined – even if they are taken to a different work station.
Smart does not just mean computer-based or robot-controlled, however: A quality control loop, involving employees from all areas relevant to production, ensures that prompt action can be taken if abnormalities are identified during the assembly process, thereby preventing a high error rate.
Furthermore, Porsche Production 4.0 is not only innovative, but also sustainable. Careful use of resources in production – such as switching to standby mode and environmentally friendly logistics – the company managed to save around one million euro in 2016, while also reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 2,254 tonnes.
In the Porsche quality center augmented reality is being deployed to discover if it is possible to obtain precise information about individual components quicker. Work steps or production details can be displayed directly on a tablet with added computer-generated information. Even minor deviations from the standard are identified immediately making it possible to see clearly where body parts fit issues occur.
The quality of body parts is checked quickly and precisely using optical measuring . Every component is fully digitalised and measured in three dimensions. Up to 16 million points are recorded per scan, enabling the entire component geometry to be extensively plotted in a high-resolution point cloud. In the quality assurance process, deviations between each individual body point and the as-designed CAD data can be determined in the minimum amount of time. Using the digitalized measurement data deviations are also visualized precisely in an all-over 3D representation.
Using a laser projection system conventional templates are no longer required for correct bolt positioning. The projected laser image simply allows positions of the bolts to be corrected quickly dispensing with time necessary and cost intensive production of new bolt templates.
Laser Guided Robot Process
The Panamera side-panel frame is produced from aluminium rather than steel; a line laser scanning sensor guides the automated roll hemming process implemented combining the soft aluminium alloy with hot-formed steel to optimum effect.