Digital Innovation Hubs Digital Innovation Hubs

Sirris Hub Smart Assembly Sirris Hub Smart Assembly

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Contact Data

Coordinator (Research & Technology organization)

Sirris, The collective Centre for and by the technological industry in Belgium

Coordinator website

Year Established



Graaf Karel de Goedelaan 5, 8500, Kortrijk (Belgium)


Social Media

Contact information

Rik Vanhevel
+32 479 980654



The DIH addresses the need of the local industry for practical and advanced knowledge about smart assembly for electro-mechanical products. The DIH started its activities in 2016. The scope of the initiative is introducing new and digital technologies into assembly processes. The DIH is based on the continuous development and exploration of an application lab. The first milestone was at the opening in March 2016. The application lab contained three cells: picking, assembly and quality assurance. Available technologies were cobots, agv, smart glass, wearables, instruction devices, monitoring systems, …In March 2017 the next version was launched integrating some new cobots. In September 2017 a complete new version of the application lab will be launched bringing it to an even closer level to real industrial needs. The services of the DIH are: • Industrial feasibility studies • Research projects for industry • Sensibilisation and inspiration for new technologies • Training, Master Classes • Making the bridge between new technologies and industry

Het initiatief beantwoordt de nood voor de lokale industrie op het vlak van praktische en geavanceerde kennis betreffende het assemblageproces van elektromechanische producten. Het initiatief startte zijn activiteiten in 2016. De scope is het introduceren van nieuwe en digitale technologieën in assemblageprocessen. Het initiatief is gebaseerd op de continue ontwikkeling en exploratie van een applicatielab. De eerste mijlpaal was tijdens de opening in maart 2016. Het applicatielab bevatte toen drie cellen: picking, assemblage en kwaliteitsbewaking. De beschikbare technologieën waren cobots, agv, slimme bril, draagbare technologie en kwaliteitsbewakingssystemen, … In maart 2017 werd een nieuwe versie van het lab gelanceerd met enkele nieuwe cobots. In september 2017 zal een volledige nieuwe versie van het lab gelanceerd worden dat nog dichter zal staan bij de industriële uitdagingen en realiteit. De dienstverleningen van het initiatief zijn: • Industriële haalbaarheidsstudies • Onderzoeksprojecten voor de industrie • Sensibilisatie en inspiratie voor nieuwe technologieën • Training, Master classes, • De brug maken tussen nieuwe technologieën en de industrie

Link to national or regional initiatives for digitising industry

The activities of the hub are well aligned with the Dutch national initiative for digitising industry, MADE DIFFERENT – Factories of the future 

Market and Services

Market sectors

  • Manufacture of basic metals and fabricated metal products
  • Manufacture of machinery and equipment
  • Manufacture of electrical and optical equipment
  • Manufacture of transport equipment

TRL Focus

  • TRL5 - Component and/or breadboard validation in relevant environment
  • TRL6 - System/subsystem model or prototype demonstration in a relevant environment
  • TRL7 - System prototype demonstration in an operational environment
  • TRL8 - Actual system completed and qualified through test and demonstration
  • TRL9 - Actual system proven through successful mission operations

Services provided

  • Collaborative Researchs
  • Concept validation and prototyping
  • Testing and validation
  • Commercial infrastructure
  • Incubator/accelerator support
  • Education and skills development
  • Awareness creation

Service Examples

Masterclass cobots

Another service example describes a masterclass cobots. The target group of a masterclass cobots are people with no experience in automation or cobots. By the end of the masterclass they have an insight in the possibilities, advantages and disadvantages of cobots. The strength of a masterclass is that it is not just a theoretical happening. The participants develop a practical case with real cobots and learn on the spot how to program a cobot, sensors, vision systems. By combining state of the art technologies the participants get a clear insight in what these technologies could be for their companies. Also the interaction between the participants is highly appreciated.

Feasibility study

Another typical service example is a feasibility study for Melexis. Melexis is a large enterprise in the electronic sector. One specific process required the handling of small electronic components. As this was a basic fast task it was not easy for operators to fulfill. However the process required operators in the proximity to perform other tasks. Therefor cobots seemed the ideal solution. Before implementing this Sirris executed a feasibility study to investigate aspects like accuracy, zero-defects, security, …. Melexis implemented the solution and its operators could focus on the value adding processes and speed of the process increased drastically. Implementing these solutions leads to new business for system integrators.

Feasibility study

A typical service example of a feasibility study is the project together with Fomeco. Fomeco is an SME specialized in all kinds of applications of tubes (exhaust tubes, hydraulic tubes, air tubes, ….). One of the main challenges for a company like Fomeco is the deburring process, critical to deliver high quality products. Their traditional approach was based upon complete manual deburring. This is of course a very costly way of working. On the other hand a fully completed automated solution is not feasible in an economical way because Fomeco is producing lots of very small series. The solution that was explored was a combination of implementing cobots for the basic deburring activities combined with the highly skilled operators for the final finishing phase. At the Sirris Hub there was a feasibility study to explore this concept. The result was implemented by Fomeco. By doing this Fomeco could boost its activities because the skilled operators – not easy to find – could now focus on the most challenging deburring tasks together with cobots in a secure environment.


Organizational form

(Part of) Private organization



Number of employees


Evolutionary Stage

Fully operational

Geographical Scope



  • Regional funding
  • Memberships
  • Other


Number of customers annually


Type of customers

  • Start-up companies
  • SMEs (<250 employees)
  • MidCaps (between €2-10 billion turnover)


Sirris network

Partner Type



Technological competences

  • Cyber physical systems (e.g. embedded systems)
  • Robotics and autonomous systems
  • Artificial Intelligence and cognitive systems
  • Location based technologies (e.g. GPS, GIS, in-house localization)
  • Interaction technologies (e.g. human-machine Interaction, motion recognition and language technologies)
  • Augmented and virtual reality, visualization
  • Simulation and modelling
Last updated: 08/09/18 11:16