Digital Twin Training: BEUMER Group develops high-end Training System
Xcelgo and BEUMER Group have developed a Digital Twin of the baggage handling system which BEUMER Group will install at a large Chinese airport hub. Other than using the Digital Twin for virtual commissioning – and thereby increasing software quality – BEUMER Group delivers the model as a training system.
For most passengers on their way to a destination, damaged, delayed or lost luggage can ruin the airport experience. No matter the quality of other airport and airline services. But it is a complex affair to sort baggage in an optimal and efficient way.
As one of the global leaders in the development of automated baggage handling systems, BEUMER Group is aware of this fact. That is one of the reasons why a large Chinese airport appointed BEUMER Group to design, supply and install the new baggage handling system at what is going to be one of the largest detached terminals in the world.
Fast and flexible virtual commissioning reduces onsite testing
To test the complex automated system properly, BEUMER Group has developed a Digital Twin of the entire system using Xcelgo’s software platform Experior. As long-time partners, Xcelgo and BEUMER Group have already developed a virtual catalogue of BEUMER Group’s own components in Experior, which eased the modelling process of the Digital Twin significantly.
By emulating the control software with a Digital Twin developed in Experior, we can confirm that the software performs as expected and thereby reduce the system startup time
The Digital Twin is used for virtual commissioning tests of the system’s control software – both at PLC and high level:
“By emulating the control software with a Digital Twin developed in Experior, we can confirm that the software performs as expected and thereby reduce the system startup time,” says Lars Guldager, Senior Software Project Manager at BEUMER Group.
He emphasizes the flexibility and speed of the emulation tests and the fact that you can begin again from scratch by the push of a button. Similar tests could last days or even weeks onsite.
“By testing with a Digital Twin first, we know the software will work, once we go onsite,” Lars Guldager adds.
Prepare for the future with the Digital Twin
Virtual commissioning in Experior is one of the drivers whenever BEUMER Group develops and integrates new systems. And for this project, the Digital Twin will also be handed to the airport to use as a high-end Operator Training System.
Experior is an ideal tool for training as you have a much better overview of the whole system and the opportunity to speed up time
By using the Digital Twin as a platform for training, the end-user can increase the operators’ understanding of the baggage handling system.
“Experior is an ideal tool for training as you have a much better overview of the whole system and the opportunity to speed up time,” Lars Guldager says.
An airport can also use a Digital Twin as a test setup to test different baggage flows and evaluate possible upgrades to the system – for instance when predicting an increase of baggage over time.
“The opportunity to color bags differently depending on their destination gives a sublime visual representation of the flow in the system,” says Ivan Søndergaard Jensen, Xcelgo’s project manager on the development of the training system.
Acquiring a Digital Twin for training of new operators and testing of future flows and upgrades can thus provide end-users with more fact-based information to better plan for the future.
Ivan Søndergaard Jensen predicts that Digital Twin Training Systems will become an important competitive parameter in the future:
“15 years ago, there was no mentioning of virtual commissioning in the tender material for baggage handling systems, and now you can’t sell a system to a large airport if you cannot emulate it with a Digital Twin. The same evolution could easily happen with Digital Twin Training Systems”.