Real-time IT for complex production processes

Welcome to the pages of the Automation and Digitalization business unit of Fraunhofer IOSB! We are happy to support you if you are looking for a competent development and innovation partner for technological challenges in areas such as Industrie 4.0, factory control, logistics and machine learning.

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Our profile

The Automation and Digitalization business unit provides a highly focused range of services throughout the entire automation pyramid. This includes solutions for manufacturing companies, system integrators, machine suppliers, automation providers and software vendors delivering production-related IT.

We focus on creating innovative and functional IT solutions for complex manufacturing processes. For many years now, we have been designing, developing and supplying pioneering system solutions for industrial applications, ranging from measurement and control technology to embedded systems and sophisticated production-control and MES systems. Our activities are concentrated in the following fields: Industrie 4.0, IT security in the industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), collaborative human-machine systems, digital twins, and customized methods of machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) for use in manufacturing, assembly and logistics. 

Our ambition is to provide integrated, secure and service-oriented management of data and information based on open standards. With the SmartFactory OWL and the Karlsruher Forschungsfabrik (Karlsruhe Research Factory), we offer cutting edge development and demonstration environments for SMEs and for major corporations.

We address these topics:

Digital twin and asset administration shells

Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)

Industrial Communication Technology

Industrial Human-Machine Interaction

IT Security in Industry

Data-driven process improvement

Web-based information systems

These are the skills we bring to the solution of your problems:

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

Plug and Work

Edge and Cloud Computing

Self-organizing production

AutomationML and OPC UA

Cyber-physical systems

OPC UA over time-critical networks (TSN)

International Data Spaces / Industrial Data Space (IDS)

Industrie 4.0 asset administration shells

We successfully cooperate with customers from these sectors:

  • Plant operators and system integrators
  • Machine builder and supplier of automation components
  • Software company for production-related IT

Cooperate with us

Companies can cooperate with us within the framework of funded joint projects or commission R&D services directly. Follow the link to learn about other opportunities.

Further information on the business unit


»AI competence is not enough on its own«

In the future, manufacturing will be self-organizing. To  achieve this end, each element of the production network – from sensors to secure cloud interfaces – must harmonize perfectly

visIT issues

These issues of the IOSB science-journal are explicitly dedicated to topics of the business unit:



Research Factories&Co.

Our research factories serve as testing and demonstration centers for the data-driven production of the future. Industrie 4.0 and smart manufacturing can be experienced and special forms of practical collaboration with companies become possible.

In the Competence Center for AI Systems Engineering Karlsruhe CC-KING, we research the fundamentals and applications of a methodical integration of AI into production.