Heidelberg Digital Unit one of Germany’s top digital labs for third time in succession

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For the third time in succession, the Heidelberg Digital Unit (HDU) at Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) is being honored with a Capital Award as one of Germany’s top digital labs in the “core-business-related innovation” category.

HDU recently developed Performance Advisor Technology (PAT), a new component of the Heidelberg Cloud. This technology is based on artificial intelligence (AI). Thanks to big data and an appropriate algorithm, PAT is able to identify major deviations from a standard state that have the potential to negatively affect sheetfed offset press performance. It then suggests measures (e.g. process improvements) to the user. Heidelberg Assistant acknowledges the measures taken and the algorithm learns from this ongoing feedback, which improves the quality of the messages and suggested improvements generated by PAT. Performance Advisor Technology is now available worldwide to over 2,000 Heidelberg Assistant users with presses connected to the Heidelberg Cloud.

“We’re delighted and honored to win an award for being one of Germany’s top digital labs. The fact that this is the third time in a row proves that our multidisciplinary teams are continuously making outstanding contributions to digitization innovations with a high level of practical relevance,” says Ludwig Allgoewer, Global Head of Sales & Marketing and Head of the Heidelberg Digital Unit.

With PAT, the Heidelberg digital lab has taken another big step forward in the use of digital technologies. This application impressively demonstrates how AI can assist and support production system operators. In this particular case, AI plays a key role in optimizing capacity utilization on sheetfed offset presses. A cognitive process is transferred to an algorithm that processes large volumes of data at high speed to obtain suggestions for improving the performance of the Speedmaster sheetfed offset presses in the Heidelberg portfolio. The AI-based Performance Advisor Technology solution completes this task faster than people could ever hope to.

Second place in “core-business-related innovation” category

This is the fifth time experts from German management consultancy firm Infront Consulting and Germany’s Capital business magazine have investigated the successes companies are achieving with digital labs. Their focus was on innovations that have also been successfully commercialized.

Each year, the Capital Award is presented in two categories – “core-business-related innovation” and “non-core-business-related innovation” – each with the sub-categories “industry” and “service”. The Heidelberg Digital Unit won a Capital Award in the “core-business-related innovation” category (“industry” sub-category). Having come third last year with its Print Industry Climate Report, HDU went one better this year by achieving second place.

The panel of judges appointed by Infront Consulting and Capital decided to present Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG with an award after analyzing an online questionnaire and speaking in person to HDU operations managers and the company’s management team.

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