Experiments - Lighthouses

Cross-Border Experiment in the Cutting Tools Industry


Lighthouse description

NECO is a Spanish company, part of the French Tivoly Group, that manufactures cutting tools, such as taps and cylindrical and flat rolling devices, for customers from the Power Generation, Aeronautic and Automotive Industries.

In the NECO Industrial case, the efforts will be focused on the threading tools, or taps, which are made of High-Speed Steel and offer good performance against temperature and wear when performing machining operations at customer premises.

The flute grinding operation, which is the one who provides the final product with the correct flute form and cutting angle in order to cut the material and properly evacuate the chip, is the part of the manufacturing process selected for this lighthouse experiment, due to a majority of defects being originated at this stage.

The manufacturing context which encouraged NECO to join MIDIH is summarized on the fact that there is a high digression in the eventual performance of threading tools produced as part of different Manufacturing Orders.

The ambition is to improve the stability and repeatability of the taps’ performance, and the main objective is to develop cognitive manufacturing abilities that will help control the production in order to meet the quality requirements and performance.



    The challenge of the MIDIH lighthouse experiment, in the case of NECO, relies on three pillars:
    • To achieve a higher level of digitization of the automated manufacturing processes through the adoption of CPPS/IIoT technologies.
    • The ability to share production data and tool usage with OEMs through trusted industrial data spaces.
    • The adaptation and optimization of manufacturing management through Cloud and AI platforms.

  • SOLUTION (Main results expected to be achieved):

    Regarding the solutions, the MIDIH experiment could basically be described on three points:

    • To establish a digital twin of both the manufactured product and the process.
      • The part digital twin will consist in the implementation of an optical laser device who will be able to scan the part and the part will be reconstructed from the point cloud and the dimensional inspection will be automatically performed by a 3D viewer software. This way, the defects on the flute form and cutting angle of the manufactured tool will be detected. Furthermore, the cycle time will be matched, so, it will be feasible to integrate the scanning device in-line, into the manufacturing process, in order to pursue a Zero-Defect Manufacturing approach.
      • The process digital twin will consist on installing a number of sensors in the pilot flute grinding machine in order to monitor the process, in order to control, in real time, the operational parameters.
    • Correlating the product and process parameters through data analysis, this way enabling NECO to predict failures and defective parts and extract conclusions in order to optimize the machine set-ups to achieve higher stability and repeatability for the taps and maximize customer satisfaction.
    • On a higher level, the integration of all this information, along with the one about the status of the tool, will be integrated in a dashboard, and this interface will help the operators and supervisors in the decision-making. All this data and information could be shared with OEM customers, as it would consist of an industrial data space for sharing them with a high level of security and trust among all the parts involved.



Andoni Laskurain