HANNOVER, Germany - Tapio, a cloud-based, open-platform wood manufacturing operating system running on Microsoft Azure, will be launched by Homag during Ligna 2017, in Hannover, Germany May 22-26.

Homag noted it has created Tapio Gmbh in Munich as a separate business, as it presented background on the system, developed by Software AG of Darmstadt, Germany. During a webcast for journalists today, Homag said it will show its equipment readied to integrate to it at Ligna in Hall 14. Older machines and those from other manufacturers can also be integrated into the platform

Information is the fuel of today, Homag offers as rationale for the new platform. "Does this also apply to the wood industry? The answer is a resounding 'Yes.' Without data, tools cannot be adjusted and workpieces cannot be machined," it said in its release statement.

The press conference this morning was presided over by Homag CEO Pekka Paasivaara and Julian Spöcker, sales and product manager.

"We've invited world class technology partners to assist us in developing this digital platform," Paasivaara said, noting Software AG and Microsoft's roles in building an open platform.

Homag, the parent of Stiles Machinery in th U.S., and Homag Canada, says Tapio "helps companies steps industry are now taking the step into Industry 4.0 – and thus into the digital future." The name tapio stands for ‘tap, input, output.’  It also happens to be a mythological Nordic god.  

A digital platform for the value chain in the wood industry

Tapio "completely covers the whole wood industry value chain," Homag says, and it combines digital products for the entire wood industry with thousands of production machines as well as a wide range of materials and tools in an IoT platform (IoT = Internet of Things).  
The Tapio technology combines mechanical engineering know-how, service, software and consulting for companies of all sizes worldwide in order to simplify work and increase productivity and quality, yielding an extended range of applications that can make individual business processes more efficient, faster and more reliable..
A separate company, Tapio GmbH, is now headquartered in Munich to operate the cloud-based platform with digital products and data-based services ("smart services"). Therefore, the tapio user is supported in thoroughly exploiting optimization potentials for production and marketing processes.

Homag says that Tapio is open to partnering and developing new solutions with open interfaces to all partners, woodworking companies and technologies. Besides CloudReady machines, older machines can also be integrated into the platform - the same applies to different software solutions or other manufacturers‘ products. Homag offered this summary:

Regardless if it’s an operation close to the machine or away from the machine, whether a business process or a production process, it’s more important today than ever before to align all details and parameters along the value chain. In other words, it is essential to coordinate the entire process – from production, to processes, to data flow. And Tapio performs all of this.
 
Woodworking is a complex business. Understanding our partners’ requirements and woodworking companies is just as important as developing new technologies and trends. But which digital opportunities are opening up? What does the end customer want tomorrow? And how will services evolve? tapio provides these answers, because tapio stands for machine competence, software expertise, consulting services and also services – thus lifting the wood industry to new heights. Tapio generates intelligence from tons of collected data, which then can be profitably used by wood-processing companies. 

Managing data security

Together with the USA, Germany is a world leader in the digitalization of industry. This goes hand in hand for taking over special responsibility for securing all data. Whether for smaller companies, medium-sized companies or global corporations, tapio uses the same highest standards and is involved in Homag’s coordinated reference project for IT security for Industry 4.0, IUNO. Funded by the German federal government, the project brings together 21 renowned partners from different size institutions and companies from industry and research (including Siemens, Bosch, Fraunhofer, and many others). Tapio also works together with software partners such as Microsoft and the Software AG.