AMable

Integration of Industrial Data Space and Blockchain to support additive manufacturing

The principal objective of the AMAble project (www.amable.eu) is to enable the uptake of additive manufacturing (AM) technologies by SMEs/mid-caps leading to the development of innovative business and service models and new value-chain models in a fully digital environment – thus bringing their ideas and business cases to life and making their innovations Additively Manufacturable (AMable). To lower the barriers for EU SMEs/mid-caps in the uptake AMable creates an ecosystem for additive manufacturing. The ecosystem includes a market place for services that advance the evolution of an additively manufactured product through the manufacturing stages of Concept, Construct, Print and Finish. Stakeholders of the ecosystem are providers of additive manufacturing services, users of these services (i.e. mainly SMEs) and AMable infrastructure providers.

To achieve its objective, AMable provides a digital marketplace for the contracting of AM services and a secure infrastructure for the information exchange between AM service providers and AM service users. Information exchange uses the Industrial Data Space as basis, extended with the use of Blockchain technology. Therefore, the AMable infrastructure has the following components:

  • Industrial Data Space connectors for secure data handling in distributed manufacturing environments
  • An Industrial Data Space integrated Blockchain app as a client to the Blockchain infrastructure
  • A Blockchain instance for auditable recording of transactions

In other words, the AMable ecosystem applies a combined Industrial Data Space/Blockchain approach for continuous, gapless, encrypted documentation of the product evolution process covering the entire value creation chain from Intellectual Property [IP] relevant ideas to quality relevant manufacturing process events.

Fraunhofer ISST, as member of the AMable consortium, is in charge of providing technology and guidance to make the Industrial Data Space technology usable for AMable stakeholders and to support the integration of the Industrial Data Space with Hyperledger Fabric, as open source implementation basis for community Blockchain solutions.

Besides the adaptation of an Industrial Data Space Base Connector to AMable needs, Fraunhofer ISST has set up a test environment for AMable information exchange, using a combined Industrial Data Space/Hyperledger Fabric infrastructure.

The Industrial Data Space Connectors enable the linking of data artefacts (e.g. CAD file, simulation result) with contracts, data transfers between two connectors by means of Industrial Data Space messages, invocation of Hyperledger Fabric Chaincodes (aka smart contracts) for recording of transfer transactions.