The Association for Electrical, Electronic & Information Technologies (VDE) acknowledges outstanding technical and scientific accomplishments with an annual award. One of this year’s recipients is Dr. Ingo Stork, who is honored for his dissertation “A cognitive architecture for production systems such as laser material processing”. This research was conducted as part of the CoTeSys cluster of excellence at the institute for data processing under the supervision of Prof. Diepold.
The project aimed at increasing the flexibility, quality, and output of industrial processes by enabling production machines to imitate human capabilities. To that end, this thesis investigates an architecture that makes it possible to create cognitive software agents. A system that is constructed using the method proposed in this thesis is capable of observing a process, deriving a data-driven process model, learning favorable system states from a human expert, planning and closed-loop controlling the system parameters accordingly.
As a demonstration scenario, Dr. Stork considered several laser material processing applications that are known to be unstable and difficult to control. The experiments showed that using the proposed methods, a constant processing quality could be assured, even though several important process parameters, like the processing velocity, varied by up to 600%. In addition to the scientific contribution, this thesis is bound to have a positive impact on industrial applications as well.