• Fully automated measurement of the position of the sections on the
    construction site based on a laser tracker fixed in place at the site

  • Fully automated alignment of the sections (24 axes simultaneously) such
    that the gap size is optimised across the circumference of the joint points
    once the sections have been joined. (Accuracy of the alignment of the
    sections, each with a diameter of 8 metres, to 1/10 mm)

  • Joining process supported by synchronous operation of two axis groups at
    a time.
  • Technology:
    • Siemens S7 400
    • Siemens WinCC
    • Siemens converter technology (diverse)
    • Laser tracker Hexagon Metrology Leica AT960
    • Leica Metrology Foundation SDK
    • Leica Lasertracker Pilot

Photo by Jorge Gobbi

Successfully brought to series production stage: a fully automated system for
unloading empty drums from lorry platforms. The system is installed on the loading
ramp of a chemicals company. It automatically detects the packing scheme of
the lorry load and performs the loading at a speed of 19 s per drum.

Displaced loads, interruptions in the packing scheme are detected and an
intelligent strategy is used to process them with high reliability.


  • Siemens S7 CPU 317
  • WinCC flexible
  • SEW converter technology

The task in this ambitious project was to develop the architecture for a modular,
open and expandable system that enables pre-assembled modules to be joined
in any combinations for all kinds of customer applications.

This architecture was implemented using object-oriented programming


  • Beckhoff EtherCAT PLC
  • Central control on basis of open source framework
  • Beckhoff safety terminals and PLC
  • OPC UA (Server/Client)
  • MS SQL-Server

Embedded PC systems becoming increasingly established in automation
technology is encouraging companies to extend the use of object-oriented
software development procedures to industrial environments, a step that is
long overdue. In this context, Elbfisch provides a runtime environment and a
canon of basic functions that enable complex automation tasks to be
implemented on inexpensive hardware platforms in Java.

Key words:

  • Java 8.x
  • Object-oriented design
  • Open Source