Articles made from fine ceramics are recording a rise in production on a global scale. There are many reasons for this development: fewer trade barriers, higher living standards in threshold countries and projects such as the “Clean India” campaign. The initiative primarily focuses on the sanitary area and brings a great boom for the industry. ceramitec 2018, the key trade show for the ceramics industry, will showcase these market developments: exhibitors will present the trends in fine ceramics on a worldwide scale, ranging from automation to digitalization in manufacturing and many more, at the Munich exhibition grounds from April 10 to 13, 2018.
Fine Ceramics are one of the major exhibition segments of ceramitec: 17 percent of the booked space are especially dedicated to it—and the trend is rising. Industry giants, such as SACMI, Maschinenfabrik Gustav Eirich, Lippert GmbH, and participations through the Pôle Européen de la Céramique have already signed up. In addition, there will be a Hungarian joint pavilion in Hall B6 for the first time ever.
Efficient manufacturing processes as a challenge
The industry is currently experiencing a strong boost. At the same time, it has to face major challenges, such as more stringent environmental regulations or the requirement of greater flexibility in manufacturing. In addition, the fine ceramics segment needs solutions for the manufacturing and process chains in order to get fit for Industry 4.0. Actually, customer wishes such as ever more frequent mold changes make it increasingly difficult to shape the manufacturing process efficiently. Plant engineering responds to this with new developments, which will be presented at ceramitec 2018.
Stephan Eirich, Managing Director of Maschinenfabrik Gustav Eirich, comments on these current issues affecting the fine ceramics industry and on ceramitec as a platform for innovation: “We are already using many possibilities of analyzing and evaluating process-specific data and thus performing automated optimizations of the subsequent processes. This is only possible if there is cooperation between all the links of the manufacturing chain with a view to creating competitive ’smart’ ceramics. Accordingly, the expectations that we place in the forthcoming ceramitec are high, and we are confident that the trade show will once again live up to its reputation as a leading get-together of the industry.”
Full automation finds its way into manufacturing
The manufacturers of sanitary ceramics and tableware have already capitalized on Industry 4.0 in the field of automation: a new fully automated procedure for pressing cups with handles allows for a product change within a few minutes. In a traditional production procedure, a whole shift is often required to do so. As key trade show, ceramitec presents the complete bandwidth of new developments in the fine ceramics segment, including the innovations in automated manufacturing.
The next step: digital networking in manufacturing
Even with increasing automation, processes must remain easy to handle—the main key word here is digitalization: digital user interfaces help operate the plants, the process being supported by visual systems intended for maintenance purposes. The latter also enable remote diagnoses or remote maintenance through the plant supplier. With its panel discussion under the slogan “ceramitec goes digital”, ceramitec 2015 was already in touch with the latest trends of the industry. Just like the previous edition, ceramitec 2018 will give significant momentum to point the way to the future of processes and manufacturing in fine ceramics.