Virtual start-up

Digital Twin

SPANGLER – the Plus of digital visions.

We look back on our first online live lecture on the subject of ‘Virtual start-up‘ with great satisfaction. We decided to go this electronic way as the long-lasting Corona restrictions have made it difficult to visit our customers. Martin Müller and Robert Heislbetz gave a presentation to the nearly 30 connected customers via webinar. The focus was on the numerous additional benefits that can be realized with a virtual start-up.

Virtuality brings real added value

In the webinar the project planning of a digital twin for plants as well as the advantages of the virtual start-up were explained. The main focus was on the testing phase between PLC control and systems engineering which can be carried out even before the assembly of the plant. This enables early detection of conspicuous features and early optimisation of process procedures. Furthermore, the experts went into detail as regards the possibility to reproduce control processes as well as safety programmes like for example safety interlocks and shutdown matrices, via the real time capable core of the simulation computer. Requirements, which result from a functional specification sheet and may arise only months after start-up, can also be shown in that way.

From theory to practice

By means of a customer’s project from the automobile sector, the experience and the suitability for daily use were shown. In this case it is a retrofit of an existing plant with three big production lines for the galvanisation technology.

The plant was to be equipped with a new control technology and connected with the ERP system, without shutting down the whole plant and with minimum standstill time. Taking this into consideration, Spangler offered a line-for-line retrofit, planned and simulated before by a virtual start-up. For the implementation, a detailed ‚digital twin‘ was designed. The simulations were connected to a failsafe PLC in order to realistically reconstruct production conditions. Thus, the process sequence could be tested thoroughly and adjusted accordingly. Even before the physical start-up, optimisation of the plant process and training of the operators took place. The result was a successful retrofit with a minimum start-up period as required by the customer.

Martin Müller, Sales Manager, sums up the primary additional benefit of the virtual start-up: ‚We achieve a calculable competitive advantage for our customers due to increased planning and project planning reliability as well as due to clearly reduced costs for resources and personnel. Because of the early planning optimisation of the processes not only a smaller time frame for the start-up is required, but also the base for long-term stable production is created. We see a clear potential for the future. This is the reason why we will continue to invest in this service for our customers.

If you wish further information or if you would like to participate at our next live presentation, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Our experts Martin Müller and Robert Heislbetz








Digital twin and reference installation








Behind the scenes during the live presentation