Siemens is stepping into university with the launch of a teaching programme designed to put industry 4.0 on the curriculum.
The company is teaming up initially with Sheffield, Middlesex, Newcastle, Liverpool John Moores and Manchester Metropolitan universities to introduce advanced industrial tools, data and approaches into apprenticeship, undergraduate and masters courses.
Titled Connected Curriculum, the initiative features Siemens Digital Industries' industrial software portfolio and cloud-based IoT platform MindSphere, while industrial training and education program supplier Festo is a key delivery partner
Billed as a highly secure operating system which connects industrial machines and devices via IoT protocols, MindSphere allows data from multiple sources to be captured and analysed simultaneously, creating a real-time picture of the whole production process via a single interface.
The collaborative scheme was announced by Brian Holliday, managing director of Siemens Digital Industries, at the recent 2019 MindSphere Innovation Network (MINe) Symposium, hosted at the University of Sheffield and involving 15 academic institutions.
Since launching two years ago, MINe has engaged with more than 50 businesses on in excess of 20 projects.
Said Holliday: “Collaboration is central to delivering successful, robust and secure industrial IoT projects. Universities can be key partners in this process, often having expertise industry doesn’t, such as data science, visualisation and insights into human behaviour including how people engage with technology.
“This is why Siemens developed the MindSphere Innovation Network in partnership with several universities two years ago, which in turn has informed the Connected Curriculum we have announced this week. I am now looking forward to help explore the full potential of Industrial IoT with our MindSphere platform at the heart of the process.”
Universities can be key partners in this process, often having expertise industry doesn’t, such as data science, visualisation and insights into human behaviour
Brian Holliday, managing director, Siemens Digital Industries
Professor Mike Hounslow, Vice-President and Head of the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Sheffield, said: “Following a longstanding strategic partnership with Siemens, the University of Sheffield was the first institution to adopt Siemens MINe programme with the launch of the MindSphere Lounge in 2017.
"We have worked closely with them over the last two years to maximise the incredible benefits of closer industry and academic collaboration.
“I am therefore delighted that Siemens chose to launch their Connected Curriculum at Sheffield, and we are proud to be one of the first UK universities to embed the programme into our teaching.”
Manchester Metropolitan University will be the partner university in the Connected Curriculum that will focus on delivery to postgraduate students – embedding the programme in its new Industry 4.0 Masters courses in the Faculty of Science and Engineering that are launching in September to bridge the Industry 4.0 skills gap.
The Faculty of Science and Engineering at Manchester Metropolitan University will focus on delivery to postgraduate students.
Its pro-vice-chancellor professor Andy Gibson said: "We are delighted to be collaborating with Siemens on the Connected Curriculum as our students and academic colleagues will benefit immensely from working with such a pioneering and transformational technology company.
“Our partnership will ensure that we remain at the cutting edge of the digital revolution and continue to lead the way in innovation in postgraduate education, such as with the suite of six new Industry 4.0 masters degree courses launching in September.
Participants at the symposium also included Dr David Pugh from the Digital Catapult, Rab Scott, head of digital at the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC), and Andy Gilchrist, business development manager at the Science Division of the University of Oxford.
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