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CeMAT 2018: Knowledge platform for logistics providers and supply chain managers

This year, CeMAT will feature another excellent set of forums. Together with major partners such as VDMA (Germany’s mechanical engineering industry association), BVL (Germany’s logistics association), the Fraunhofer IML Institute and the EHI Retail Institute, CeMAT will illuminate the opportunities presented by new Logistics 4.0 concepts while highlighting the latest best-practice solutions.

“Together with Hannover Messe, we are crafting a unique knowledge platform for the digitization of the supply chain, featuring numerous best-practice solutions and innovations like nowhere else in the world,” said Dr Jochen Köckler, member of the managing board at Deutsche Messe.

Below are some of the forums planned for CeMAT 2018. 

Augmented and Virtual Reality in Logistics – the Road to Future Human-Machine Interaction

The steadily advancing process of digitization is placing high demands on the interface connecting humans with their digitized environment. Information needs to support people in their work as opposed to overtaxing them.

The forum titled “Augmented und Virtual Reality in Logistics – the Road to Future Human-Machine Interaction” will sketch out new prospects and solutions for human-machine interaction.

Experts from industry and research will reveal the current state of the art and provide a window on the future.

This includes AR solutions to support operational processes as well as VR solutions for planning and training (keyword: “gamification”).

This forum is organized by the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics, in cooperation with the Logistik Heute magazine. It takes place at the Logistics 4.0 Forum in Hall 19/20 on Monday, 23 April, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Logistics Real Estate in Urban Spaces

The growth of cities and metropolises poses major challenges to logistics – not only in terms of transport, but also in terms of warehousing and transshipment capacities.

Meanwhile, the sharp rise in population is leading to the development of residential property in close proximity to industry and logistics.

And the growth of the CEP sector (courier, express, parcel) is also sparking additional demand for logistics space in central urban locations.

The development of logistics real estate is thus coming into conflict with social, ecological and economic objectives.

What are the technological concepts, business models and cooperation and operator models which would be suitable for resolving this conflict?

What international best-practice examples and experiences are available that could also be put to use in Germany and Europe?

Organized by BVL, the forum takes place on Monday, 23 April, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm at the Logistics Solutions Forum in Hall 21.

Digitization of Warehouse Logistics

In an age of digitization, virtually every company is considering the right strategy and solutions for the future. But it is often unclear where, exactly, the benefits of digitization lie.

This question applies equally to the technological evolution of the warehouse. Many companies in Germany (and elsewhere) face the challenge of identifying the best new warehouse technologies.

The range of established and new technologies is broad, but it is often difficult to assess the added value of using them.

This is where the BVL forum titled “Digitization of Warehouse Logistics” comes in.

The working group of the same name has spent time investigating new warehouse technologies and evaluating the relative advantages of each. In a dialogue with the users and providers of innovative technologies, it is eager to present its findings.

The forum takes place on Tuesday, 24 April, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm at the Logistics Solutions Forum in Hall 21.

Startups in the Logistics Industry

When the topic is digitization, you can’t say enough about the role of startups. Every five days a digital logistics startup is established somewhere in the world.

These young, agile companies have innovative business models that offer technology-driven solutions affecting the entire logistics supply chain – including the digitization of freight forwarding, long-distance transport, warehousing, contract logistics and last-mile delivery.

These companies are taking advantage of the high number of transactions and large amounts of data available to design growth and innovation strategies.

What opportunities are out there for industry and the logistics sector? What role can cooperation platforms and data exchange platforms play for established companies and startups?

Inspiring speakers, demos and pitch sessions in a dynamic environment invite you to create new connections and new opportunities.

Organized by BVL, the forum takes place at the Logistics 4.0 Forum in Hall 19/20 on Tuesday, 24 April, from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.

The Slightly Different Co-worker: Human-Robotic Cooperation in Socially Networked Industry

New advances in interconnectedness and enhanced Industry 4.0 solutions have led to a new type of interaction between humans and machines.

On the one hand, this forum will provide an insight into the industrial development and application of technical Industry 4.0 solutions in logistics.

On the other, it will reflect the state of the art in research into work and the resulting changes in the industrial working world.

Individual topics will explore cooperation with autonomously operating transport systems, handling equipment or intelligent containers and operating equipment such as shelving.

The forum contributions will be presented in the context of “socially networked industry”, in which people and machines work together as partners.

The forum is organized by the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics (IML) in cooperation the Logistik Heute trade magazine. It takes place on Tuesday, 24 April, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. at the Logistics 4.0 Forum in Hall 19/20.

Container Warehouse Technology, Returns Management, eCommerce

In the continually evolving logistics industry, well thought-out and efficient processes are a significant success factor. A particular challenge arises from the increasing share of eCommerce in the industry.

In particular, the high amount of overhead for storing, order picking and packaging products in batch size 1 is causing the logistics industry to rethink some things.

A forum of experts will discuss which new logistical concepts in the field of container storage technology as well as returns management could lead to increased efficiency in the future.

This forum is organized by the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics and takes place on Wednesday, 25 April, from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at the Logistics Solution Forum in Hall 21.

Agile Project Management

The roots of agile project management go back to the mid-90s, when software developers discovered that traditional PM methods were no longer ideal for digital projects.

Now, 20 years later, a wide range of corporate areas are already benefiting from agile methods.

The expert forum titled “Agile Project Management” will demonstrate the advantages of agile methods and explain in which type of situations they should be used.

The forum is geared to project managers, SCM managers, IT managers, logistics managers at manufacturing enterprises as well as to change managers.

Organized by SALT AG, the forum takes place on Wednesday, 25 April, from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon at the Logistics 4.0 Forum in Hall 19/20.

Order Picking in an Age of Industry 4.0

At present, order picking remains a 90 per cent manual activity. But this situation is bound to change, given the rapid technical development in the area of Logistics 4.0 and the advantages of automatic systems in terms of economy, speed and safety – a change which is also urgently needed, as inventory levels are constantly increasing due to the continuous growth of online retailing, while demographic change makes it increasingly difficult for companies to find qualified personnel.

As a result, automated systems and autonomous order picking are gaining an increasing amount of attention.

Experts and leading manufacturers will present best-practice examples and give an outlook on how order picking will change in the coming years.

Organized by Deutsche Messe and the MM Logistik magazine, the forum takes place on Wednesday, 25 April, from 3:00 to 5:00 pm at the Logistics Solutions Forum in Hall 21.


The processes employed by the retailing industry are still largely performed manually. Most of the work is done by humans, who are superior to robots due to their cognitive abilities.

Given the new technologies now available, this could change over the next few years: Moving robots, mobile gripping robots or transport drones can be used to support not only warehouse operations, but also transactions at the point of sale.

Retailers face major logistics challenges in the face of omni-channel solutions due to the growing need for real-time solutions. Robotics and automation solutions are already being taken into account in the design of new central warehouses.

Numerous technological innovations have emerged, for example in the field of autonomous mobility, augmented reality solutions and artificial intelligence.

The Robotics4Retail Forum is directed logistics and IT managers from the retail industry as well as at logistics service providers.

Organized by the EHI Retail Institute, it takes place on Thursday, 26 April, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. at the Logistics Solutions Forum in Hall 21.

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