September 2020: Mission Launch – A Revolution for the Smart Factory


Predicting the future is hard. Just a year ago, nobody would have believed the immense upheavals Covid-19 has wrought in our daily lives. The fact that the pandemic, with all its uncertainties and economic repercussions, coincides with a time when the digital transformation of production and industry was finally gaining traction threw a massive spanner into the works for many modernization efforts. On the bright side, it’s also a time of great opportunity, as everyone is looking for new timely solutions.

“We never thought it would be possible to so easily generate and semantically process data from our existing production facilities and machines.”

Emile di Serio, CEO Saint Jean Industries

French automotive supplier Saint Jean Industries was one of the first customers who turned to emocean and its brand new indigo operating platform for a modern solution to their digitalization woes. The problems they faced weren’t new to us. As Philipp Kirschenhofer, one of emocean’s founders, explains, “In my capacity as an industry consultant for the automotive industry, I have witnessed the same problems again and again. Messaging platforms for the system spanning exchange of data between machines, components and applications in the smart factory are a dime a dozen. But they all share the same drawback: they don’t support real time data access.” But even short delays can lead to massive issues, e.g. when sensor data in control systems is not up to date. With our revolutionary new operating platform indigo, we were able to help SJI overcome these challenges.

With our unique “liquify data” approach, we are the first to provide both true real time communications on the shop floor as well as fluid transfer to overarching systems like ERPs all the way to cloud based services for Big Data and AI. With real time capability both up- and downstream, the indigo platform allows for more precise control than ever before while leveraging AI and machine learning entities for production optimization and predictive maintenance, reducing overall operational costs immensely. With these strengths, our aim is to change the world of smart factories by truly enabling the new paradigms of Industry 4.0 and Industrial IoT.

Led by Philipp and co-founders Michael Schwarz and Prof. Dr. Jesse Luo, a specialized team of software engineers at emocean are currently working on the indigo platform. It is the first of its kind to unify data semantically and synchronize timings across system boundaries, enabling synchronous local and remote data access in true real time. At the same time, indigo frees companies from vendor lock-in through its open hardware and network interfaces. The platform scales down to the smallest systems in production while also scaling up to complex cloud-based services and architectures.