The MEMAN project supported European companies in the metal mechanical sector in their efforts to maximise their resource saving potential and increase competitiveness. The project was based on an innovative approach that addresses optimisation of whole manufacturing value chain instead of isolated single company or process optimisation, and includes energy, raw materials, and other supplies.
Project partners worked on optimising resource efficiency across the complete metal mechanical value chain, from casting and machining to surface finishing. This was done through:
This three-and-a-half year initiative is the single project awarded under the Factories of the Future topic, ‘Global energy and other resources efficiency in manufacturing enterprises (FoF-03– 2014)’. The project ended in June 2018.
Since 2014, MEMAN applied and tested its methodology, developing a wide range of recommendations on energy and material optimisation for three different competence clusters: Casting, Machining and Surface finishing.
In this way, MEMAN provided an approach to achieve major cost reductions, reduce emissions and improve environmental performance, as well as improve regulatory compliance. At the same time the project methodology supports the incorporation of smart manufacturing innovations as solutions for integrated value chain optimisation.
All the results of the project are presented in the MEMAN final publication "Unclocking the resource saving potential of the metal-mechanic sector"
To achieve MEMAN’s overarching goals, the project’s work plan is divided into 11 work packages:
WP1 will perform a detailed description of the 3 different value chains and clusters (casting, machining and mechanical engineering), highlighting the qualitative and quantitative benefits of the holistic approach, the several functional units (processes, equipment and systems) that interact along the production chains and how they affect the whole materials and energy flows. This WP will detail how the different actors from MEMAN consortium (both beneficiaries and third parties) interact together to cover as much as possible of the described value chains, finding mutual benefits and higher added value from the interaction and exchange of experience. The analysis of the 3 clusters will be made qualitative and quantitatively, providing a current image of how is energy and raw material consumption and the environmental impact for each cluster and use case selected in the project. This deliverable will provide also hints on the possible improvements and new business opportunities that could derive from the implementation of the new technologies and services.
The WP 2’s objectives are three-fold:
WP3 aims at the development of a multi-stakeholder decision-making toolbox, dealing with environmental and economic impacts throughout the entire value chain(s) of the consortium. The tool is based on energy and material flow models of the production processes and related infrastructure coupled with LCA databases and allowing for a multi-criteria optimization of the entire value chain, e.g. regarding production costs, energy and material consumption, times and quality. The tool will be used to evaluate the current situation as well as various alternative scenarios, assisting the user in choosing beneficial cross-company improvement measures.
The general objective of this work package is to: carry out the modelling for all three chosen value chains using the developed MEFA software developed in WP3; Perform an integrated life cycle assessment (LCA) and life cycle costing (LCC); Assess the current state of the three value chains regarding the allocation of costs, resources consumption and ecological impacts of involved processes and products with the combination of the MEFA software and the LCA/LCC methods; Simulate the ecological and economic impacts of alternative scenarios; Provide technical, environmental and economic data to WP5 to enable the comparison of the different scenarios.
The goal of WP5 is to assess with an interdisciplinary approach the scenarios for value chain optimisation and re-engineering developed in WP4 in terms of their technical feasibility as well as ecological, economic and social impacts, and develop 3 coherent detailed business cases for each of the implemented solutions for value chain optimisation.
WP 6 will be focused on defining and setting up an information architecture allowing process data acquisition in the different production facilities, storing these process data in a cloud based value chain data container so that all partners involved in Value Chain Analysis can obtain the needed information from one central source and in a standard format. Special attention will be paid to solve the particularity of heterogeneous data sources (SCADA, MES, ERP,…) in every production facility, and secure data storage in the cloud. The same architecture will be able to handle the feedback from the Decision Tool, based on the results of value chain LCA analysis, by forwarding it automatically to the production facilities.
The objective of WP7 is the design of the new business models affordable by the different value chains and clusters of the project under the collaboration criteria established for reducing energy and resource consumption along the entire value chain. The design of the new business models will take into account aspects of value proposition, interface with customer, infrastructures, and profit equation, taken into account the point of view derived from the energy characterization along the entire value chain, both globally and company isolated. The WP will also address the economic evaluation of new defined business models, the sensitivity analysis under different scenarios and a comparison with the current situation.
The main objectives of WP8 are to:
• Validate the value chain simulation and modelling in industrial conditions by implementing the optimised value chain of the three example products with their new organisational structures, IT solutions and business model in an industrial environment within each cluster.
• Test tools (developed in the previous WPs) on the 3 example product value chains. This work will validate their features according to practical situations.
This WP aims to:
• To identify the conditions and criteria for a meaningful energy characterization scheme of individual enterprises in the casting, machining, and surface finishing industries;
• To analyse and compare different approaches for energy characterisation of individual enterprises in terms of their feasibility and impact vis a vis the identified criteria;
• To draft a potential approach for energy characterisation of individual enterprises in the casting, machining, and surface finishing industries;
• To discuss and propose strategies for energy characterisation of enterprises taking into account overall value chain optimisation constraints.
The WP has two parallel objectives: prepare the exploitation of project knowledge, and inform about the project and its achievements. To this end, G!E will develop exploitation strategies for the exploitable project results, design and execute high quality communication material and activities, as well as disseminate project results to relevant stakeholders.
WP11 manages the overall project in respect of finances, contracts and administration. WP11 implements the strategic management of the project through validated tools and procedures, including decision making, monitoring, quality review etc.
The MEMAN consortium brought together fourteen partners from six countries including industrial enterprises, SMEs, and experts in eco-innovative business models.