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WIreless FACTory and beyond

Timeframe : 1/7/2013 – 31/12/2015

Technological needs of industrial production have changed deeply over the past years. The increase in the complexity of automation systems and competition with emerging economies resulted in new challenges: the demand for increased flexibility in order to face the ever changing conditions of the market, as well as reduced setup and production costs, led to deep changes to the architecture of plants.

Even though today’s production systems are typically based on complex technologies, their operation still suffers from significant limitations, which are mostly due to a relatively small number of causes. Among them, a critical issue is the physical interconnection among devices and equipment: factory environments rely on a huge amount of wires in order to achieve communication, monitoring, process control, and power supply.

The Wi-Fact project focuses on the above mentioned points, and aims at overcoming the limits of current systems for what concerns flexibility, safety, dependability, and reconfigurability.

Keywords: Flexible production systems, Industrial communications, Wireless communications

Financial support by: Ministry for Education, University and Research of Italy (MIUR)

Coordinator of the IEIIT unit in the project: Gianluca Cena