Schaeffler, Siemens Bring Unique AI Industrial Copilot

Technology company Siemens is harnessing the power of generative artificial intelligence (AI) to help industrial companies drive innovation and efficiency. Particularly, across the design, engineering, manufacturing, and operational lifecycle of products.

At the Smart Production Solutions (SPS) trade show in Nuremberg, Siemens and the motion technology company Schaeffler showcased a production machine augmented with the Industrial Copilot for the first time. Moreover, the two companies demonstrated how Industrial Copilot can augment Siemens’ industrial automation engineering and operation solutions.

Siemens and Schaeffler introduce the Siemens Industrial Copilot, automating engineering and operation tasks on a production machine.

Generating automation code with natural language input

The AI-powered assistant connected to Siemens’ engineering framework Totally Integrated Automation (TIA) Portal via the open API TIA Portal Openness can support various automation tasks. Particularly, the Industrial Copilot helps Schaeffler’s automation engineers to generate code faster for programmable logic controllers (PLC), the devices that control most machines throughout the world’s factories. Thus, engineering teams can significantly reduce time, effort, and the probability of errors. Specifically, by generating PLC code through natural language inputs.

With industrial companies speeding up their automation and digitalization journey, there is an increasing demand for experienced automation engineers. Especially those in implementing these projects. The Siemens Industrial Copilot helps automate repetitive tasks, freeing up engineering resources for higher-value work. It will also empower less-experienced shop-floor employees to grow into engineering roles.

Industrial Copilot – Generating PLC code with natural language input: Making the workforce more efficient.

Schaeffler CEO Klaus Rosenfeld said: “Driving the digital transformation is a top priority for Schaeffler and it plays a key role in our company strategy. Generative AI solutions like the Industrial Copilot will speed-up this journey and empower our employees. We partner with Siemens because we are both technology companies, sharing the same vision: Transform the way we operate.“

Finding and fixing errors: Reducing machine downtime

Siemens Industrial Copilot has access to all relevant documentation, guidelines, and manuals to assist shopfloor workers. Most especially, in identifying possible errors. These capabilities enable maintenance teams to identify errors and generate step-by-step solutions more quickly. Thus, this will help to significantly reduce machine downtime, make industrial companies more efficient and thus support sustainability efforts.

“This is the beginning of a new era: In the past, we had to speak to machines in their language. With the Siemens Industrial Copilot, we can speak to machines in our language,” said Cedrik Neike, Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and CEO Digital Industries. “In few years, AI will be omnipresent in industry. Siemens and Schaeffler are frontrunners, joining forces to make Generative AI industrial grade.”

Overall, the generative AI-powered assistant will assist in optimizing the engineering and operation lifecycle. From the planning phase to validation, generating unit tests of function blocks, monitoring to optimizing machine performance, the Industrial Copilot will make human-machine interactions faster, more intuitive, and more efficient.