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Fronius research into cognitive production systems continues: Pro²Future secured until 2025


Fronius has a 20 percent stake in the Pro²Future research center, along with four other shareholders: JKU Linz, TU Graz, UAR GmbH, and AVL List GmbH. An international jury has now approved a second round of funding, meaning research on cognitive products and production systems is secured until 2025.
digital production pro2future

Factories in which forklift trucks operate and serve lines independently, in which robots hand each other the individual components, where machines plan the production process together, and humans are no longer involved – artificial intelligence (AI) makes many of these future scenarios conceivable for the production environment. Together with the Pro²Future research center, Fronius is developing scenarios of how a future like this could look.

Since its establishment in April 2017, the Pro²Future research center has made a name for itself with more than 135 scientific publications. The 40 employees are supported by over 30 partners from the field of science and more than 40 industrial companies. Together they conduct intensive research into cognitive products and production systems.

“The machine should learn to understand man.”

Fronius is particularly involved in the field of human-machine interaction. The top priority for the welding technology specialist is the role of humans at the center of developments: “Since the Industrial Revolution, humans have had to know everything about machines and be at their mercy. Machine learning could bring about a real revolution here – AI should make it possible in the future for machines to understand humans and respond to their needs,” says Helmut Ennsbrunner, Head of Pre-Development at Fronius Perfect Welding, enthusiastically. In addition, Fronius wants to promote the topic of predictive maintenance as part of its Pro²Future activities. Predictive maintenance should in future provide welding technology users with the ideal level of support in the production area. Fail-safe production systems and increased efficiency will be the result.

Future topics with high industrial relevance

The first funding period ends in spring 2021. By giving the go-ahead for the second funding period until 2025, the evaluation committee highlighted the high technological relevance, the immediate industrial applicability of the research results, the cutting-edge research topics, the excellently coordinated partner consortium, and the internationally outstanding industrial partners. The COMET (Competence Centers for Excellent Technologies K1) funding program of the Austrian Research Promotion Agency thus enables activities on future topics that Pro²Future has identified as relevant to be carried out:


  • Cognitive industrial systems
  • Intertwining human and artificial intelligence
  • Optimization possibilities in production through research on cause-effect relationships
  • Fail-safe production through data use on the shop floor
  • Using AI for sustainable production
  • Using AI for increased safety at work and adaptable safety systems in production


More information about Pro²Future can be found on the website and on LinkedIn.

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