Members of the media got a sneak peek at the igusGO app at last month’s Hannover Fair, a fascinating new cloud platform that uses artificial intelligence in a very creative way. A beta version of the app was demonstrated by CEO Frank Blase as we walked around the company’s booth. A user simply takes a photo of an application — say, an excavator — along with its surroundings, and the igusGO app will show them which of the company’s motion plastics products can help re-design that application without lubrication.
At the show, they has the app working for bicycles, excavators, and for a tractor that was located in one of the other halls, Blase said. However, users could also go outside and hold it up to a bicycle and the app would recognize the application. He noted that his wife even tried it out in their garage, and it worked fine with any bicycle.
“Use the photo, and it shows your igus matches,” Blase said. “The AI recognizes first that it’s the category excavator. We had to train it for that, to read for different pictures and different views of an excavator. Then, the second thing is that we collect all the available igus information that we have on the category excavator. We have all the applications where igus parts made an excavator lube-free. Let’s say a shovel — because in the shovel, that’s where all the dirt is, and the loads. How can a plastic bearing work there? Here we [show] all the bearings and different igus products that have been successfully used by different customers in a shovel. And from here, we link to the available resources, which we call the shop. There, you can connect live, or download 3D data.”
Blase said that the purpose of the app is to get all the right design information out in seconds, and to help engineers with problem solving. It takes the guesswork out and lets engineers play around to achieve a high-performance solution, fast.
For a company that previously wasn’t known for cutting edge, high-tech solutions, igus has made huge strides in recent years to get its name out there. igus now has 56 online tools and apps online, that designers can use; for example, you can calculate the life of almost any product (except for the newest ones). The Cologne-based manufacturer has also been working a lot in the metaverse, which it calls the iguverse, and Blase thinks it’s the right direction to take.
Blase said that one of their engineers recently told him, “If I had these tools six months ago, we would have avoided huge mistakes, together with our customer. We would have caught a mistake where the chain was too big for the steel work. Nobody has time to dive down into the CAD. The engineers don’t have time, and so we make mistakes together.
“With these tools, where all the CAD data is available, it’s all accumulated there, and we can just play,” Blase said “We can move things here or there. We can avoid these kind of mistakes — and we can do it faster.”
Filed Under: ALL INDUSTRY NEWS • PROFILES • COMMENTARIES