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H&P Insights: 5G’s Climb to Relevance; Looking Ahead to Hannover Messe

March 17, 2021
A review of the day’s top trends and news from Hydraulics & Pneumatics editors.

5G’s Slow Climb to Relevance

At present, the impact of 5G on the communications market is largely limited to breathless advertisements about the speed and power of the fifth generation of data speed. For industries looking to take advantage of this technology, there still is more caution than anything else.

A recent study of industrial leaders commissioned by Molex found that almost half of industrial customers say they are behind in the deployment of 5G, which is considered the key to greater industrial use of augmented reality, robotics and artificial intelligence. The good news is that those industrial leaders expect to achieve their 5G business goals in the next five years. So while change is slow, it is accelerating.

“The 5G market is nearing an inflection point as carriers report steady progress despite continued challenges,” said Aldo Lopez, president of datacom solutions for Molex, in a press release. “Fully realizing 5G’s potential will transform multiple industries and markets.”

Another Digital Hannover Messe

When it comes to industrial trade shows, there simply is nothing that compares to Hannover Messe. The annual springtime event in Germany is mostly about experiences of sights and sounds and smells—particularly from the open-air bratwurst stands that dot the grounds.

It also is the place to debut new technology and to showcase where design and manufacturing innovation is headed.

For the second straight year, however, that innovation can only be shared digitally, with the event. The event assembled by the Hannover Messe team is featuring sessions on topics ranging from digital transformation to intelligent production to a global look at manufacturing. The 2021 event will take place April 12-16 and has all of the typical trappings of Hannover Messe—networking innovation and a focus on women in manufacturing. All that will be missing is the great food.

Mixing Pneumatics, Customization

One of the highlights of the annual pre-event press tour at Hannover Messe is a trip to the Festo booth, which usually has something jumping, flying or swimming. With the digital Hannover Messe all that is available, Festo will settle for a demonstration on how a mix of pneumatic and electric automation and mass customization can work together. The Productivity Master demonstration will illustrate this by showing how USB flash drives can be customized both in design and in content.

“While the Productivity Master features a mix of pneumatic and electric automation, from flow sensors to servo drives, from pneumatic slide units to electric Cartesian robots, it is the way these products are connected that enables true digitalization,” said Nigel Dawson, head of business development, Electric Automation at Festo.

About the Author

Bob Vavra | Senior Content Director, Power & Motion and Machine Design

Bob Vavra is the Senior Content Director of Power & Motion and its sister publication Machine Design. Vavra has had a long career in publishing, media and events. He has covered all aspects of manufacturing for the past 20 years and is a regular attendee at events such as IMTS and Hannover Messe. Vavra is also a sought-after webcast moderator and event emcee, and has presided over events in the U.S., Germany and China. 

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