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Automotive Industry

KAMAX-Werke GmbH & Co. KG

Process data acquisition and connection to the higher-level MES for the heat treatment in the Osterode plant

The company

KAMAX-Werke GmbH & Co. KG was founded in 1935 by Rudolf Kellermann as a "factory for threaded parts". Today, more than 2,500 employees spread across eight international locations (including Spain, USA, Czech Republic, Slovakia) work on the research, development, production and sales of high-strength fastening technologies for the global automotive industry. These include engine bolts, wheel bolts and wheel studs in various dimensions and grades. High-strength fasteners must meet a wide range of requirements in terms of multiple functions, loads, environmental influences and more.

KAMAX's special process technology meets these requirements and can therefore count itself among the leading suppliers of fasteners for the automotive industry.

Task and solution

In terms of quality, heat treatment is one of the key processes in the manufacture of high-strength fasteners. For this reason, the company KAMAX requires a process data acquisition system, a documentation system and a process visualization system for its new quenching and tempering systems for documentation and control. These are to be used for the administration of recipes and batches, but also for the recording and processing of the malfunction messages and heat treatment histories that are important in terms of quality. The first quenching and tempering plant with the new system was commissioned at the Osterode plant. SIMATIC WinCC with the PM Control and PM Quality add-on modules was used to implement this task.

The order system is connected to the higher-level MES (Manufacturing Execution System). From the MES, the products to be quenched and tempered next are transmitted to the PM Control module, from which orders for the following batch with the specific process parameters are automatically generated, triggering the heat treatment for the products.

In order to optimize capacity utilization, the batch intervals are kept very small by means of special calculation methods. This ensures the best possible utilization of the quenching and tempering equipment. Further calculations determine the minimum spacing of successive batches to prevent mixing of the products.

Process data as well as fault messages are recorded for a long period of time so that they can be evaluated even years later. In addition to data recording and graphical output of this data, the PM Quality module integrated in WinCC enables the automatically generated heat treatment certificates to be called up and printed out. Via Ethernet, WinCC, including the additional modules, is coupled both to the MES and to a PLC of the SIMATIC S7-315 series. In order to be able to immediately view and rectify problems on the plant, the operator and the maintenance personnel use the implemented fault message system. Already occurred fault messages are clearly displayed via the alarm statistics of the application.

In addition to the alarm parameters given in WinCC, the fault messages can be sorted here according to duration and frequency. For this purpose it is possible to filter the alarms with special modules, e.g. to output only messages of certain plant areas or within a desired time period.

The quenching and tempering system at the Osterode plant will be used with this system as a standard for future plants, so further plants of this type are already being planned.

The project in compact

Heat treatment plant Osterode

  •     high-strength fasteners due to heat treatment
  •     optimal utilization by calculation of charge intervals
  •     fault message statistics
  •     documentation of all quality-related parameters and processes

Process data acquisition

  •     SIMATIC WinCC V6.2
  •     PM Control
  •     PM Quality


Automation technology

  •     connection to higher-level MES
  •     Ethernet coupling to S7-315 2DP