The concepts underlying what is known as “Industry 4.0” are generating paradigm shifts and require us to identify new ways of creating value within and between interdependent companies in a logic of community of interest and value networks.

The MicroLean Lab offers stakeholders in Switzerland’s highly industrialised areas the opportunity to explore the changes brought by digitalisation within an industry that is characterised by specific know-how and by products that are recognised for their excellence, quality, precision and reliability.

The MicroLean Lab also aims at taking into account the new societal trend for responsible energy consumption and efficient production in an ecological and economical logic.

The MicroLean Lab’s objective is to give industrial stakeholders facing common challenges a shared understanding of new opportunities for creating products and services. The Lab will use direct experimentation to identify the core technologies that seemthe most relevant to invest in.

The particular configuration of the Swiss industrial landscape, which is mainly made up of small and medium-sized enterprises, is pleading for such community research on topics that fall outside the expertise of each individual company but become inevitable.

A school project

The MicroLean Lab experimentation platform is aimed, first, at all Swiss companies, but also at the students of the Haute Ecole Arc Ingénierie, who are their next generation.

In parallel with the MicroLean Lab’s own activities, led by senior engineers and research professors, undergraduate students will have the chance to take part in projects that match their development needs.

In addition, the involvement of research assistants and young graduate engineers in the scientific and technical developments of the MicroLean Lab means that partner companies can dip into a talent pool for optimal technology transfer.

The main technical elements

Structure: a modular micro-factory made up of interconnected technological blocks which can be easily reconfigured according to specific production needs

Transfer system: all operations allowing transfer and maintenance of materials, parts and information

Artificial intelligence: relevant exploitation of the data allowing the realization of good parts on the first try

Smart Manufacturing : interconnection of machines in order to make the production autonomous