MEETINGS n°14 – LIGNA

DCF 1.0 In the name of innovations

Sonia Maritan

LIGNA 2017, which took place from 22th to 26th May in Hannover, was marked by its intensely international profile, the new impulses given by the Industry 4.0, but also by the high degree of approval received by the new exhibition concept and, last but not the least, by its being an edition oriented to innovations.

Deutsche Messe AG celebrated in 2017 it 70yh anniversary. In seven decades, the original Exportmesse 1947 has become a worldwide leader in the field of trade shows organized both in Germany and abroad.

With its new concept, LIGNA showed it could give a fundamental help to its sector’s growth stability. More than 1.300 exhibitors – of which 900 coming from abroad – presented evolved solutions and technologies, as well as innovative production plants on 129.000mq of exhibiting surface.

LIGNA 2017 registered in complex 93.000 visitors, of which 42.000 foreigners, coming from more than 100 countries to gather a complete overview of the newest developments in woodworking and treating. A general turnout increase was registered, in particular people coming from Asia, North America and Europe. The top ten list of the visitors’ origin countries includes France, Austria, USA, Sweden, Belgium, Spain, China, Poland,

 Italy and Russia.

More than 80% of the visitors valued the new theme layout of LIGNA from “good” to “very good”. The particular attention given to the sector of surface finishing has proved itself as winning, raising interest in a third of the visitors.

The balance of the five exhibition days is definitely positive: the most important world exhibition for machinery, plants and tools for woodworking and treatment is going very well. “LIGNA 2017 has become a milestone in the path to the digitalization of wood industry”, declared Andreas Gruchow of the Board of Directors of Deutsche Messe, during the press conference at the end of the event. “The solutions for Industry 4.0 for wood industry – above all digitalization, network connection and automation – were the main topic of this edition. Exhibitors proposed a really wide range of solution, from complex and sophisticated integrated plants for industry, to entry level system for craftsmen realities”.

Some pictures of the 2017 edition of LIGNA in Hannover

In a few words, a more pronounced international profile, for both exhibitors and visitors, and a new impulse to the digitalization trend, which is re-defining the sector’s appearance. However, there was more: for the first time, a new concept of the distribution of exhibiting spaces was presented, reflecting the changes happening in the usage of wood working technology. Indeed, a dividing line between industry and artisanship does not exist anymore, and the new exhibition concept brought new visitors groups, attracted by the mix of bigger and smaller machines. “The new exhibition formula met full appreciation. Our customers are highly satisfied”, said Wolfgang Pötschl, President of VDMA (the German Machine and Plant Builder Association, based in Frankfurt am Main) and CEO of Michael Weinig AG in Tauberbischofsheim. “Digitalization and integrated production are new success factors for our customers. We expect a strong increase in deliveries and we will do our best to optimize delivery details”.

 The producers presented new software solutions which integrate all parts of a plant. In line with the Industry 4.0 topic, the trend of the visualization of process and work phases arose great attention. The woodworking industry proved its innovation potential with a great number of proposals, going from service app for machine monitoring to digital warnings for the operator through pictograms on sawing machines and safety camera systems for wheel loaders. The digital twins of machines and tools based on the Cloud revealed themselves extremely useful for efficient process of quicker order preparation and for recording machines’ life cycle.

Another characteristic among the numerous novelties presented at LIGNA is the trend of achieving an increased production efficiency without weighing on the operator. For instance, an exhibitor presented the very first “three-click” process for the complete processing of a piece of furniture. In the field of machine components and automation, robots are taking giant steps forwards.

 Finiture awaits you at the next LIGNA, from 27th to 31st May 2019!