BI-REX is one of the eight Competence Centres founded by the Italian Ministry of Economic Development within the 4.0 Industry National Plan framework. The centre, as reported in its Chart is a no for profit consortium which carries out external activities following non-profit aim and focused on Big Data.
BI-REX is a public-private Consortium born on the 11th of December 2018 in Bologna gathering in partnership 56 actors: 12 bodies between Universities and Research Centers and 44 enterprises of excellence working in the field of services finance and logistics, energy, automotive and aerospace, mechatronics, ICT, biomedical and agree-food. BI-REX collects the know-how of the Emilia Romagna High Technology network (existing industrial research laboratories, infrastructures, Digital innovation Hubs - DIH) but with a national and international road map. One of the main goals of the Centre is to assist companies, especially SMEs, in the adoption of Industry 4.0 technologies.
In particular, BI-REX provides companies, especially SMEs with the following services:
Orientation and Consultancy
- Awareness raising on Industry 4.0 technologies and related benefits for enterprises and SMEs, on Italian Industry 4.0 Strategy, in particular on the Italian Competence Center System and BiRex services.
- Workshops, webinars and conferences, thematic working groups, reports and analyses on Key Enabling Technologies
- Digital readiness assessment services and support services for the digital transition
- Consultancy services on I4.0 technologies (e.g. cybersecurity, IoT, big data, AI, 3D printing, advanced robotics, etc.)
- Demo, proof of concept and prototyping activities to allow enterprises an SMEs understanding and testing the real advantages offered by Industry 4.0 technologies
- Several types of trainings: trainings on specific topics, technologies and tools related to Industry 4.0, trainings on innovation management. Trainings can be delivered:
(a) on site, using the learning centre or the digital capability center, which is the pilot plant for proof of concepts, testings and prototyping activities which require the use of the equipment.
(b) in e-learning or blended mode, using a dedicated web platform.
Innovation Projects and Fundraising Support
- Possibility to implement collaborative projects of industrial research, experimental development and innovation through calls co-financed by Bi-Rex and Italian Ministry of the Economic Development
- Scouting of funding opportunities and support in collaborative projects definition, proposal writing and submission
It’s important to remark that BI-REX headquarter is located in Bologna (Italy), its facilities cover 1.500 square meters inside the Opificio Golinelli, place of competence and activity contamination: training, research and business activities. In particular the competence center can rely on: offices area for its personnel, co-working area which will host professionals and researchers from different companies and research institutions, training laboratory hosting over 100 students/trainees and the Digital Capability Centre. The Digital Capability Centre is an advanced production pilot line, where new Industry 4.0 technologies are integrated with traditional ones, in a digitally interconnected environment. The Pilot Plant has been designed in order to: anticipate digital transformation processes; support technological innovation of enterprises; increase the added value of company products. The pilot plant is made of the following technologies and tools: selective laser melting, direct energy deposition-DED, mobile and collaborative robotics, a measuring station, a CNC machine center, edge computing, cloud and analytics, a 5G cell. This pilot line will allow the realization of advanced prototypes and high added value small series, making them available on the market and will allow SMEs testing technologies before invest.
On the website Bi-Rex company profile in English can be found at the following link: file:///C:/Users/Serena%20Dangelo/Downloads/BI-REX_Institutional-Presentation_ENG%20(2).pdf.
The translation into English of the whole website is on-going and will be available soon.
BI-REX è uno degli otto centri di competenza fondati dal Ministero Italiano dello Sviluppo Economico nel quadro del Piano nazionale Industria4.0. Il centro ha un focus specifico sui Big Data.
Il Centro, come riportato nel suo Statuto è un consorzio no profit che realizza attività focalizzate sulle tematiche dei Big Data senza scopo di lucro.
BI-REX è un Consorzio pubblico-privato nato l’11 dicembre 2018 a Bologna, che raccoglie in partenariato 56 attori: 12 tra Enti, Università e Centri di Ricerca e 44 Imprese di eccellenza operanti nei settori di servizi finanza e logistica, energia, automotive e aerospace, meccatronica, ICT, biomedicale e agrifood. BI-REX raccoglie il know -how della rete Alta Tecnologia dell’Emilia Romagna - laboratori di ricerca industriale esistenti, infrastrutture, Digital Innovation Hubs (DIH) - ma con una missione e una roadmap nazionale ed internazionale.
Obiettivo principale del centro è quello di supportare le aziende e in particolare le PMI nell’adozione delle tecnologie abilitanti dell’Industria 4.0.
In particolare, BI-REX fornirà alle imprese, specialmente alle PMI, i seguenti servizi:
Orientamento e Consulenza
- Sensibilizzazione sulle tecnologie dell'Industria 4.0 e relativi benefici per imprese e PMI, sulla Strategia Industria 4.0 Italiana, in particolare sul Sistema dei Centri di Competenza Italiano e sui servizi di BiRex..
- Workshop, webinar e conferenze, gruppi di lavoro tematici, relazioni e analisi sulle tecnologie abilitanti chiave
- Servizi di valutazione della maturità digitale e di supporto alla transizione digitale
- Servizi di consulenza su tecnologie I4.0 (es. Cybersecurity, IoT, big data, AI, stampa 3D, robotica avanzata, ecc.)
- Demo, proof of concept e attività di prototipazione per consentire alle imprese e alle PMI di comprendere e testare i reali vantaggi offerti dalle tecnologie Industria 4.0
- Numerose tipologie di formazione: corsi di formazione su temi, tecnologie e strumenti specifici legati all'Industria 4.0, corsi di formazione sulla gestione dell'innovazione. I corsi possono essere impartiti:
(a) in presenza, utilizzando la sala formazione di Bi-Rex e il digital capability center, dove è possibile effettuare proof of concepts, sperimentare macchinari, realizzare prototipi che richiedono l’utilizzo della linea pilota.
(b) in modalità e-learning o mista attraverso l’uso di una piattaforma formativa specializzata.
Progetti di innovazione e Fundraising
- Possibilità di implementare progetti collaborativi di ricerca industriale o sviluppo sperimentale attraverso la partecipazione a bandi co-finanziati da Bi-Rex e dal Ministero Italiano dello Sviluppo Economico.
- Selezione dell’opportunità di finanziamento e supporto alla redazione di progetti di ricerca collaborativi per la partecipazione a call regionali, nazionali, europee
È importante sottolineare che la sede di Bi-Rex è situata in Bologna (Italia), la sua struttura copre circa 1.500 metri quadrati all’interno dell’Opificio Golinelli, spazio di contaminazione per la formazione, la ricerca e il business. In particolare Bi-Rex si articola in: un’area uffici per il suo personale, un’area di co-working per ospitare professionisti e ricercatori provenienti da diverse imprese e istituti di ricerca, una sala formazione che può ospitare fino a 100 studenti, e la linea pilota. Quest’ultima è una vera propria Digital Capability Centre ospitato all’interno di Bi-Rex facilities, è una linea produttiva all’avanguardia dove le nuove tecnologie I4.o sono integrate con le tecnologie tradizionali in un ambiente digitale interconnesso. La linea pilota è stata progettata per: anticipare I processi di trasformazione digitale, supportare le aziende nell’innovazione tecnologica, aumentare il valore aggiunto nei prodotti industriali. La linea è costituita dalle seguenti tecnologie e macchine: selective laser melting, deposizione diretta-DED, robotica mobile e collaborative, edge computing, cloud and analytics, cella 5G, stazioni di misura, centro di lavoro CNC. Tale linea permetterà la realizzazione di prototipi avanzati e di e piccole serie ad alto valore aggiunto, da rendere disponibili a mercato e la realizzazione di programmi di formazione «hands-on» per partner e PMI, permettendo alle PMI di testare le tecnologie prime di investire in esse.
Il company profile in inglese di Bi-Rex è disponibile al seguente link: file:///C:/Users/Serena%20Dangelo/Downloads/BI-REX_Institutional-Presentation_ENG%20(2).pdf.
È in corso la traduzione in inglese del sito web Bi-rex che sarà presto disponibile.
Link to national or regional initiatives for digitising industry
BI-REX is one of the eight competence centers founded by Italian Minister of Economic Development in the framework of Italy’s Industry 4.0 National Plan.
This plan includes strategic guidelines that are to be implemented by 2020, an effort that will transform traditional manufacturing methods with a focus on skills and advanced technology, as well as support the digitization of the Italian economy. It also emphasizes a future based on collaboration with other countries and even joined forces with other key initiatives.
The Plan provides a wide array of measures in the short and medium term for the period 2017-2020, as well as long term, collectively ensuring the foundation of an efficient framework. The strategic measures focus on innovation, competitiveness and the development of skills.
Moreover, complementary measures are put in place supporting efforts of Industry 4.0 in different areas. Altogether, the Government has earmarked €18billion of financial funds for the purposes of the initiative.
The target audience are SMEs, micro enterprises and large companies. The core activities comprise innovative investment, stimulating private investment in the uptake of I4.0 technology, expenditures in R&D, and development of skills.
The first group of measures is based on tax incentives.
The second group of measures ensures easy access to finance.
The third group puts an emphasis on the development of skills related to new technologies and innovative processes stemming from the fourth industrial revolution. I4.0 launched the ‘Digital Innovation Hubs’, which serve as a contact point between companies, investors and research institutions, supporting and facilitating innovative investment plans, and the ‘I4.0 Competence Centres’. The I4.0 Competence Centres which provide training, live demos, presentation of best practices, technical advisory services for SMEs, launching and accelerating innovative projects and technological development. Furthermore, the Plan foresees several measures focusing on empowerment of skills through educational programmes.
More info on Italy's I4.0 Plan can be found at the following link:
REGIONAL INITIATIVE RIS3
The activity of BiRex, as reported in the following summary table, is highly consistent and synergistic with Regional strategies for innovation.
Strategic priorities and Regional policies on Industry 4.0 topics
Consistency with BI-REX activities program
Regional Law on Innovation #7/2000
It provides the framework for the realization of Emilia-Romagna High Technology Network
The High Technology network laboratories belonging to Bi-Rex partners were the main interlocutors in the elaboration of Bi-Rex proposal, in accordance with the Regional Law n. 7
The Smart Specialisation Strategy (S3) defines the framework for the 2014-2020 ERDF and ESF structural Funds
S3 addresses the Industry 4.0 enabling technologies within the strategic priority “Innovation of services” and in “mechatronics and engines” specialization field
The target sectors identified by BI-REX coincide with 3 of the 5 regional specialization areas (agri-food, mechatronics, automotive, health and wellness)
DGR 2287/2015 Regional Infrastructural Plan
It concerns the infrastructures strengthening for supercomputing and for big data storage and processing
BI-REX main focus on Big Data and the presence of the most important stakeholders dealing with computing infrastructures operating in Emilia-Romagna Region express the consistency of regional investments with our activities
Regional initiatives to support aggregation processes among players involved in technology transfer
Consistency with BI-REX activities program
Regional Clusters constitution; aggregation of High Technology network laboratories and companies able to coordinate research and innovation regional policies with professional training, internationalization and entrepreneurship development ones
Regional clusters are focused on innovation actions that take place within value chains. BI-REX will focus on research and innovation needs, mainly through collaborative projects. Therefore, the actions will be complementary and synergical.
Regional project for the establishment of the Big Data Technopole at the former Tobacco Factory in Bologna
The project foresees the future BI-REX headquarters within the Technopole: this aspect is part of the integration strategy among the main regional actors focused on big data and supercomputing.
SMILE is the Digital Innovation Hub founded by Parma Entrepreneurs’ Association and University of Parma. SMILE is part of the Italian network of DIH and was born within the European initiative I4MS
BI-REX will make SMILE and DIH network available within the regional system. The presence of University of Parma in BI-REX partnership guarantees the complementarity of interventions and the interaction among all initiatives.
Bi-Rex activities are aligned with the following RIS3 goals:
- To improve the innovation process: through Bi-Rex webinars on specific I4.0 technologies free of charge and addressed to companies, especially SMEs; through the promotion of several research and development innovative projects. At the moment Bi-Rex, with the support of Italian Ministry of Economic Development, is financing 16 innovation projects involving 47 Italian companies, 10 among Universities, with 3.2 million euros budget.
- To respond to economic and societal challenges and to develop and implement strategies for economic transformation: thank to the innovative approach and technologies such as big data and analytics, implemented within the digital capability center hosted by Bi-Rex, the center will create the essential conditions to deal with societal and economic changes. An example can be found on Covid-19 emergency and on the relevance of big data to fight the virus and to implement prevention measures.
- To avoid overlaps and replication in development strategies: Bi-Rex works in synergy with other key Italian national and regional actors within I4.0 Sector in order to avoid duplication in terms of effort and to put ideas, technologies, funds together. Bi-Rex is cooperating with other 7 Italian competence centers to strengthen the I4.0 national strategy and plan.
EU Funded Projects we are involved in
- “EUROCC - National Competence Centres in the framework of EuroHPC” (EuroHPC RIA). The project aims at bringing together the necessary expertise to set up a network of National Competence Centres in HPC across Europe in 31 participating, member and associated states, to provide a broad service portfolio tailored to the respective national needs of industry, academia and public administrations. BI-REX role within this project is to help companies and especially SMEs to became fully aware of the potential and benefits of HPC and HPDA technologies and get familiar with technology transfer measures and funding initiatives towards innovation through those technologies. To this aim, BI-REX will provide technology gap analysis, proof of concepts, will explain business models, etc.
- “CASTIEL - Coordination and Support for National Competence Centres on a European Level” (EuroHPC CSA). The project aims at contributing to the success of the activities of the National Competence Centres (as realized in EUROCC) by tackling both the maintenance and strengthening of excellence, while identifying and closing gaps due to the diverse levels of maturity between the different nations. BI-REX role within this project is to facilitate the interaction with industry, especially SMEs, and to promote the exchange of best practices on technology transfer.
- IoTwins - Distributed Digital Twins for industrial SMEs: a big-data platform” (H2020 IA). The project aims at enabling SMEs in the manufacturing and facility management/service sectors to access edge-enabled and cloud-based big-data analysis services to create hybrid digital companions to improve their production process and optimize the management of their facilities This project involves 6 Bi-Rex’s partners.
Research, Development and iInovation Projects
Client profile: SME working in the field of collaborative robotics.
Client needs: to design a management and power supply system for collaborative cells, including a human operator and a cobot, using advanced robotic AGV vehicle solutions. The system should be autonomous in feeding (selection, collection and storage) and handling of parts or components involved in productive processes.
Provided solutions: Bi-REX will support the SME in achieving its goal through two specific actions:
- Co-financing a collaborative innovation project involving the client, other SMEs, big companies and universities active in the robotics sector.
- Providing, through its pilot line, a collaborative assembly cell, and a fleet of AGVs for the physical connection between stations and warehouse;
This specific solution is implemented within the Bi-Rex call for proposals, which will fund industrial research and experimental development projects for a total amount of 5.7 million euros.
Webinars and training Courses on I4.0 Technologies
Client profile: small companies that ignore the impact of I4.0 enabling technologies on their company processes and productivity and/or believe those technologies require huge and long term investments and can be implemented only by big and structured companies.
Client needs: to increase efficacy and productivity, to increase awareness on the I4.0 technologies impact, to know and understand use cases for possible application
Provided solution: BI-Rex provides free webinars in order to introduce the main issues and challenges related to I4.0 technologies and their implementation into industrial contexts. Several webinars have already been organized involving more than 600 people working in SMEs on the following topics: Innovative Solutions for sanitizing work environments (with reference to the COVID-19 emergency), Smart Environments, Robot and improvement of productive processes, Cross reality: possible resources to support productive economic recovery, Cybersecurity, etc. After this first webinar phase, structured courses will be soon organized in cooperation with companies, professional associations (Confindustria, Legacoop, CNA, etc.), Universities and other key actors. We strongly believe in training and in the importance on acquire new skills related to innovation and management sector.
Online reference: https://bi-rex.it/en/media-2/news/
Digital Capability Center
Client profile: a company working in the additive manufacturing sector. The company is very small, but aims at improving the level of its production by investing on 3d-metal-printing technology. Before investing on this technology, the company needs to test the 3d-metal-printing equipment in order to be sure it responds to its expectations.
Client needs: to access 3d-metal-printing technology to test its suitability with reference to the company business.
Provided solutions: Bi-Rex Digital Capability Center is an advanced production line, a smart factory pilot where new Industry 4.0 technologies are integrated with traditional ones, in a digitally interconnected environment. This pilot plant hosts the main innovative I4.0 technologies, among them the selective laser melting machine is available for companies and SMEs, with the assistance of a highly specialized technician. It is important to remark that the digital capability center will be continuously under development, to add the last I4.0 technologies. In this way, client companies will always have the opportunities to test the most innovative tools and equipment, in order to be competitive towards national and foreign enterprises working in the same field.
The English version of the website will be soon available