Fitting wireless sensors as an extra is one way of helping to introduce Industry 4.0 technology. Photograph: IMMS.
Fitting wireless sensors as an extra is one way of helping to introduce Industry 4.0 technology. Photograph: IMMS.

SME Digital

Under the name ”Smart Sensor Systems Model Factory“ we are supporting enterprises in their gradual adoption of Industry 4.0 technology.


Since October 2016, IMMS has had a support role in the gradual introduction of Industry 4.0 technology to industrial companies in the region. To meet the growing demand for customer-specific products and services and so to remain competitive, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are having to optimise their processes and join forces. For this reason, the Ilmenau Mittelstand 4.0 centre of excellence has been set up to support to SMEs as they begin to apply the digitisation and other technologies needed in Industry 4.0. The electronic solutions are to be the means of bringing flexibility and optimum methodology into every process in the added-value chain and every stage of business through from the drawing board to manufacture in commercially-linked networks.

The Ilmenau SME Digital Centre Ilmenau

The German federal ministry for industry (BMWi) has funded the digital centre with Technische Universität Ilmenau at its head so that four partners, called Fabs, can offer relevant information and innovative approaches which are then put to the test. The Fabs, or ”Modellfabriken (model factories)“ bridge a number of fields, which include the networking of machines and production processes, virtualisation, 3D printing and individualised production, the generating of process data and data transfer, and smart sensor systems.

The IMMS contribution as the ”Smart Sensor Systems Model Factory“

IMMS, now also known as the ”Smart Sensor Systems Model Factory“, is supporting other enterprises in their gradual adoption of the technology applicable in Industry 4.0. An example of what this means is refitting machinery and equipment with wireless and networked sensors so that data can be obtained and processed to underpin new diagnostic, maintenance and service plans. Using universal electronics platforms for components that are Industry 4.0 compatible, together with open-source software, is an effective means of achieving rapid, reasonably priced, real-time innovation.

All SME Digital events of IMMS

AI trainer at IMMS

Since May 2020, AI trainers from SME 4.0 have been supporting the planning and design of concrete AI implementation measures and strategies, imparting knowledge on methods of artificial intelligence and machine learning in digitisation and helping with their introduction, implementation and expansion. AI trainer Wolfram Kattanek of the Migration Model Factory at IMMS offers support in the following areas:

  • intelligent sensor and measurement systems
  • sensor-based AI-based signal processing
  • Machine condition monitoring and predictive maintenance
  • Knowledge transfer from research to SMEs
  • practical demonstration and implementation projects with AI

Website „Mittelstand-Digital Zentrum Ilmenau“ (in German)

  • Praxisbeispiel Schwimmhalle

    Fernauslesetechnik für eine automatisierte Wasser-Desinfektionsanlage mit UV-Sensorik   mehr »

  • Praxisbeispiel fabinit

    Das IMMS untersucht, wie sich mit Industrie-4.0-Technologien Maschinenparks nach Stillstandzeiten automatisiert und energieeffizient hochfahren lassen. mehr »

  • Praxisbeispiel KSS

    IMMS trägt zu automatisierter Überwachung von Kühlschmierstoffen bei: für mehr Gesundheitsschutz und Ressourceneffizienz. (Photograph taken by Glenn McKechnie, CC BY-SA 2.0, skaling/trimming: IMMS). mehr »

  • Funding

    The work of IMMS as ”Smart Sensor Systems Model Factory“ is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) in the ”SME Digital Centre Ilmenau“ under the reference 01MF21008C and continues the activities from the ”Mittelstand 4.0-Kompetenzzentrum Ilmenau“.

    The ”Mittelstand 4.0-Kompetenzzentrum Ilmenau“ (centre of excellence in Ilmenau serving SMEs) was part of the funding initiative „SME 4.0 – Digital Production and Work Processes“ which was funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) within the funding programme „Digitising SMEs – Strategies towards digital Transformation of Business Processes“. IMMS was funded under the reference 01MF16005C.


2016 – 2024