Good practice

Digitalising foundry production processes

Digitalising foundry production processes
© Panksvatouny, #148419969, 2018, source:
Energy, Materials
Manufacturing of machinery and equipment, Metal and plastic processing
High cost
Annual saving:
Resource savings: Raw material:
400 tonnes of metal
Associated cost savings: Energy:
Premises and operation areas:
Production processes
Size of company:
Medium (less than 250)
Advancement in applying resource efficiency measures:

Century-old system gets a digital makeover

  • Easily integrated smartphone app optimises manual labour processes
  • Identical output achieved while savings 400 tonnes on input
  • € 45 000 saving on energy costs

Kemptener Eisengiesserei Adam Hönig AG is an iron foundry located in Bavaria. The integration of a smartphone app to monitor manual production processes has led to a significant boost in company resource efficiency. The new app means higher quality castings can be produced using substantially less energy.   

Iron casting is a highly customised business. Each output mould is unique in its composition, shape and production steps which greatly affects the quality of a casting. For instance, foundry ovens contain melts made up of various compositions and at various temperatures. Such a wide range of parameters makes it difficult to speed up and optimise one-on-one casting with the goal of using less materials and saving energy. 

But this is where digital technology comes in. The smartphone application developed in the nearby Kempten Technical College with the support of the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt (German Federal Environmental Foundation) can monitor each process using barcode identification of moulding boxes and melt ladles, QR-code scanning and systematic data collection. The centralised record and subsequent analysis of each individual production step made it possible to map out and optimise production processes, linking specific melting box configurations to the melts that would we poured into them.

Key benefits

  • Melts configured to use only what is needed, saving large amounts of material and energy
  • Fewer faulty castings
  • Sped up industrial processes, better time management

Want to know if relevant support is offered in your country?