INCASE: towards Industry 4.0 via Networked Control Applications and Sustainable Engineering


Project partners:

Ghent University, Catholic University Leuven, Groupe HII (Yncréa), Lille 1 University, VOKA, ICAM, CITC-EuraRFID, Impuls Zeeland, University of Kent, University of Essex, HZ University of Applied Sciences

Lead partner:

Jos Knockaert

Ghent University – Campus Kortrijk

Graaf Karel de Goedelaan 5

8500 Kortrijk

Start date: 01/09/2016

End date: 31/08/2016

INCASE is funded by the European Union through the Interreg 2 Seas Programme 2014 – 2020

Project Description

Industry 4.0 (I4.0) is the next industrial revolution. Manufacturers are focussing on client-specific production and added-value products. In Germany 84% of the companies feel the pressure to digitize and 57% will significantly change their business model due to the digital revolution. Germany is world leader in this revolution. The project main objective is to close the gap between the 2 Seas region and Germany & other leading countries, by developing and demonstrating the necessary key technologies towards companies, in this way facilitating the conversion towards I4.0.

INCASE develops knowledge, innovative applications and pilots on key enabling automation technologies for the future I4.0. INCASE will deliver 10 thematic demonstration trajectories on those key enabling automation technologies for smart factories and green technologies for smart homes and factories. The demonstration actions will inspire practicing engineers towards new products and new production methodologies. The intermediary organizations will actively create awareness on the future I4.0.

The project contains three main workpackages.

WP1 develops pilots on key enabling automation technologies for Industry 4.0, to achieve an early market uptake by and increased awareness of the manufacturing industries. Involved technologies are Industrial Communication (Profinet, Power Line Communication, ProfiCloud, Networked Control) and Integrated Design (Mobile robotics, Industrial Hardware Targets, Cosimulation).

WP2 develops pilots to reduce energy consumption in both home automation and industrial automation, and increase the awareness & knowledge for the automation and manufacturing industries. Involved technologies are Communication and HMI technologies for smart factories and smart houses (ProfiEnergy, Power Line Communication for smartgrids, Control & HMI for Smart Houses, energy monitoring devices connected to the Internet of Things).

WP3 develops demonstration tools, based on the pilots, to perform numerous demonstration actions for practicing engineers in industry. In this way the knowledge on new technologies is increased and an early market uptake of Industry 4.0’s new automation technologies is achieved in the 2 Seas region.


The main objective of INCASE is:

Preparing the industry (automation & manufacturing industry) for the future “Industry 4.0” (I4.0) and “Industrial Internet of Things” (IIoT). This is done by:

  • Creating awareness of technical management and decision makers  of companies on the possibilities of the new technologies.
  • Preparing practicing engineers by demonstrating new technologies for the future smart interconnected factories, smart buildings and sustainable engineering.

The project specific objectives are:

  • Pilots on ProfiCloud
  • Pilots on Stress-testing on Profinet
  • Feasibility study on PLC
  • Pilots on Networked Control
  • Pilots on Integrated Design
  • Pilots for ProfiEnergy
  • Pilots for smartgrids using PLC
  • Pilots for Control&HMI for Smart homes
  • Pilots for energy monitoring devices connected to IOT, IIOT and industrial networks
  • Demonstration tools & actions

Main activities carried out during the project by Icam

In WP1, Icam will be actively involved in the development of an interregional pilot of smart factories based on 3 local demonstrators connected by the ProfiCloud. In this activity, Pilot and 3 local test set-ups for early product evaluation of the emerging industrial ProfiCloud technology used for the interconnection between distant smart lab set-ups will be produced. This is a key enabling technology for Industry 4.0. In the same Work Package, Icam will contribute to the evaluation of Power Line Communication (PLC) for use in smart grids and in industry. Experimental validation of the robustness of the communication will be tested under lab circumstances.

In WP2, Icam will cooperate with other partners for the development of Pilots for ProfiEnergy, focused on energy saving by using ProfiEnergy devices. Cooperation will be concerned also by application and evaluation of PLC for the “last mile” communication in a pilot for “smart grids”.

In WP3, Icam will contribute with other partners to the production of Demonstration tools and actions for the delivery of the technological innovation developed in WP1 and WP2. Icam will also be involved in the organization of User Group meetings.

As a general aim of the project, Icam will contribute to the communication actions (WP5) during the project. So, Icam will participate to exhibitions, will publish results in scientific articles and will present these results in scientific international conferences