gip is an international provider of efficient automation solutions for the manufacturing and process industries. For both new plants and modernization, we are active from the outset on request.
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GIP is an international provider of efficient automation solutions for the manufacturing and processing industry. More specifically: we design and construct new systems, perform system upgrades and offer advice right from the start.
Our business relationship with you will take the form of a strategic partnership. You will benefit from our extensive experience and proven professional competence.
We are fast and flexible when it comes to finding solutions to your problems. Irrespective of whether change implementation, trouble-shooting or just lending a helping hand to solve problems concerning your plant or system.
We could not do this without highly motivated staff who participate in the company’s decision-making process.
1994: Founding of GIP mbH
1995: Development of the control system VarioBatch-Classic on Windows basis with the module (PS) production and control
1996: Participation in the company M + R Automation GmbH in Ubstadt-Weiher
1998: Development of the module (MW) Materials Management
2000: Development of the module (PP) Production Planning and (KL) Cost and Activity Accounting
2002: Development of batch tracing in the module (QM) quality management
2004: Moving to Oftersheim. This laid the foundation for the further growth of the company
2011: First installation of Variobatch iPlus V1 as SCADA system
2012: New Managing Directors Mr. Hans Simon Dipl. Ing. And Mr. Udo Kocher Dipl. Ing.
2014: First installation of Variobatch iPlus V3 as MES system
2014: Foundation of the gipSoft d.o.o. in Zagreb, Croatia for the further development of iPlus
2015: Release V4
Gewerbepark Hardtwald 9
Comprehensive solutions require special know-how, focussed and co-operative. This is why we work together on projects with partners with proven track records.
Variobatch iPlus is a platform for automation processes that combines the three different systems SCADA, PLC and MES in one interface. It functions as both development and runtime environment.
This new approach allows for a tremendous increase in productivity for automation engineers while being highly user-friendly and conveniently easy to handle for operators at the production control station.Download iPlus letter!
An object-oriented, component based framework forms the core of Variobatch iPlus which is based on the microsofts® .NET framework. The system is structured in an altogether service-oriented way, which is to say that all classes and components are brought to life through database configuration only. All instances are capable of collective, networktransparent communication. The programming of components is likewise carried out network-transparently. That results in an unlimited scalability of the system and enables the building of multitier architectures with one click. In addition, the system operates fully event-driven to ensure the event processing and visualization in near real-time.
Microsoft Visual Studio® allows you to develop your own libraries set on the iPlus framework. There are only a few rules to comply with in order to set up so-called automation components. While doing so you can focus entirely on implementing your logic; other complexities such as networktransparent event processing, asynchronous method calls, access to databases, persistence of objectstatuses, remain hidden. This abstraction allows for a universal programming of all classes including, among others, transaction-based business objects, such as warehouse management components, automation objects, e.g. valves, engines, and communication objects, such as ERP connection, mail components, scanner. The same programming model is used for all classes and it is always easy to use!
Minor project-specific customizations can be developed straight in the iPlus development environment without the use of Microsoft Visual Studio®. The development environment consists mainly of a project configurator, a user interface designer, a workflow designer, and a C# editor. The database model (entity framework) can be extended with properties and complex serializable classes. Or you can even add your own customized database model. Since the iPlus development environment is programmed with the iPlus framework, you can expand it as well and tailor it to the project requirements, build your own tools to speed up your day-to-day business and reduce your period of project development significantly.
You can develop your customized industry solution to use on your own projects or sell your iPlus libraries to other companies. iPlus comes with a built-in licence manager to facilitate safe external distribution. That comes in handy for mechanical engineers especially who plan to supply their machines with user interface and control system but have their machines installed „plug and play” into the complete MES system of the customer by another automation partner.
iPlus also comes with a built-in package management system that helps you export your libraries, project configuration, designs etc. as update package. That enables you to provide your licensees with updates and to supply your customers with modifications tailored to their project requirements which you tested in advance on your own development system. It is even possible to transfer updates directly from one database to another.
Due to the special architecture of the iPlus framework and the dynamic linkage of the libraries, iPlus updates that we supply can be installed independently from your own updates without causing any incompatibilities in the system.
The vector-based 2D-/3D user interface (WPF) is generated dynamically out of the database (XAML). Designs can be overwritten in order to suit the object orientation. The whole user interface, such as forms, controls, can be customized during runtime while still remaining updateable. What’s more, it is adaptive and adjusts to all screen resolutions.
# hierarchical and consistent alarm system for all components. Unlimited alarm history and relationships with application data, e. g. production order, batch, material management …
# logging process variables. Each property of any given instance can be logged event-based and displayed in a graph. Such graphs can plot both live and history data on various scales. The chart control offers many different setting and presentation options.
# ISA-S88 (DIN EN 61512).
# graphic workflow-designer for process flow programming. Workflows can be used in a much more versatile way than specified in the S88 standard for instance as workflows for manual processes, workflows for inter-process communication, workflows for order-picking processes. It comes with an intelligent inheritance system for parameter spanning several levels of concretization such as planning workflow – material workflow –> parts list –> production order. As a result the number of required workflows is significantly reduced compared to the S88 approach.
# graphic program sequence history. All steps of a process that are performed on executing a workflow or batch are logged along with their parameters enabling you to view the audit trail as a Gantt chart in the log viewer. A comfortable and extensive search system assists users in spotting and improving process issues.
# varied options for analysis and logging. In the object explorer (live-debugger) the object status of all instances can be visualized and controlled along with their settings on the server or client.
#OPC-, Modbus-TCP and RFC1006 (Simatic®) drivers.
# converter and adapters All engineering offices use different ways of programming their PLC. We offer you the perfect means to adapt iPlus quickly and easily to the PLC model you’re using in order to reduce the period of project development significantly.
# complete Beckhoff®-TwinCAT3® integration. Our iPlus automation component model has also been implemented in TwinCAT3®in order to allow you to represent your iPlus project almost one-to-one in TwinCAT®. The built-in Twin- CAT project synchronizer generates or synchronizes your whole iPlus-project with the TwinCAT® project. After the synchronization is complete you are only left to program the remaining project-specific logic. Using our special TwinCAT communication driver communication with all objects works plug-and-play and there will be nothing left for you to configure. The iPlus visualization is constantly being updated in the millisecond range owing to the event-based programming technology. With iPlus you can save 80% of the time that would be spent programming your PLC and 100% configuration time.
# XAML-based graphical report generator. Reports can be generated from data bases as well as from the whole available object model using component live data, serializable objects etc.
# multilingualism. As many languages as desired can be added. It allows you to translate functions as well as property -values of application tables.
# a group-based rights management system allows you to assign read and write access for all objects, properties and methods.
# role-based online documentation system. Documentation can be represented and linked according to different roles such as programmer focusing on class documentation, object model …, as maintenance focusing on pdf-documents of machinery, components…, as production focusing on user documentation, project-specific features, documentation according to data …, and as IT department focusing on installation guides etc. Documentation can be viewed contextrelated and published on the internet.
# Corporate Design. You can adapt the style and design of iPlus to suit your design standards and your company’s Corporate Identity.
Which features does a production control system need today in order to meet the challenges of the competition in modern industry?
# An optimum stability, performance and flexibility must be ensured.
# Complex production processes have to be presented in a way that is easy to understand for the user.
VarioBatch® has been especially developed to meet all these challenges for you and more.
VarioBatch®.MES lets you close the gap completely between company level (ERP) and field level using the highest technological standards.Download MES letter!
The database model serves as the base on which various production and business processes can be depicted. We put great emphasis on creating a completely normalized model that adapts to your production and IT system landscape, not the other way round. The ease of adaption can only take effect if you’re using the right “chassis” such as our iPlus framework.
The iPlus framework features: completely object oriented, component-based, service-oriented, highly scalable, event-driven, event processing near real time, universal programming, vector-based 2D / 3D user interface, ISA-S88 (DIN EN 61512). Please refer to our leaflet on iPlus for additional information.
VarioBatch®.MES is not dedicated to specific industries but can be used in both process and production technology. The special structure of our iPlus framework allows for customized extension of the MES features by sectoral features. This way, VarioBatch®.MES has come to be in use in various industries. With its failure-free merging of production cycles, VarioBatch®.MES helps you stay one step ahead of the competition and achieve a perfect utilization of resources and the highest possible efficiency. In addition, all processes are ren-dered considerably more transparent.
“With Variobatch, you opt for sustainable business strategies.”
The real usability of a software depends on its user acceptance, we are aware of that fact. For that reason, we developed VarioBatch® with a focus on high usability. Many years’ experience and constant communication with our users has helped us succeed in creating with VarioBatch® an easy and intuitive graphical user interface that differs vastly from other products on the market.
The merging of the world of SCADA with the transaction-based world of MES allows for an exceptional user experience:
The user can “surf” and navigate seamlessly, without key-board entry, between physical objects, such as machines and modules, and business objects like application data since all features are linked.
With the help of VarioBatch® the user does not have to know all relations and contiguities between data in order to be able to manage the control system effectively. That shortens training periods considerably.
Scope of VarioBatch®.MES:
The master data management comes with a basic set of properties that are commonly used in a lot of industries. In iPlus, the database model (entity framework) can be enlarged to include more project- or industry specific properties, relationships and complex structures without losing updatability! Some of the most important master data are:
The variety of the aforementioned master data illustrates how wideranging VarioBatch®.MES is. Its one specific feature, however, is its production technology. Through a ingen-iously method, we call it “a strict entity separation with progressive concretization”, VarioBatch®.MES can depict any production process.
Basic components are:
# graphic process workflows with inheritable parameters and routing rules. iPlus workflows are universally applicable, for instance for production control, interface communication, business processes, and can be created or programmed by the end user on different levels of abstraction.
# material workflows for modelling flows of materials and relating them with process workflows.
# Bills of material related to material workflows and process workflows.
We continued our principle of „strict entity separation with progressive concretization“ in production:
# production order: All process parameters, routing rules, material compositions defined in the master data can be refined and concretized using inheritance mechanisms. In addition batch plans and prioritization rules can be set up. After the start of both manual and timed production all data that are part of the production order can be monitored live such as the amounts used and produced including their lot and batch designation and the graphic record of production. Long term storage of production data is nearly unlimited, i. e. only limited by the maximum capacity of the database.
# process control and visualization: here is no automation process in VarioBatch® that runs hardcoded. The system control uses workflows that are instantiated dynamically in the background. Each workflow node has its own status and acts autonomously in a large network of so-called automation components, which are structured and connected similar to the internet. Having its own defined task or function, each automation component comes with different features and in varying states and in turn triggers other automation components it is related to. This more or less indirectly creates an organized process flow.
The process flow and the complete process status are graphically represented in the visualization and process control. Depending on the authorisation level of the user, the cycle and every individual status can be managed down to the smallest detail via user interface in order to keep complete control over the production. Using iPlus, you never experience pending processes that have to be fixed by a programmer, since iPlus functions as development, runtime and diagnostic environment all in one.
# simulation: Most PPS systems are based on the MRP II approach and traditional capacity planning. That reinforces a basic source of error: The planning calculations are done with predefined algorithms and do not take into account the status of all machines in a facility. These other systems do not con-trol the machines, they only treat them as black box.
„This approach does not meet the requirements of industry 4.0.”
Rather, the same logic that manages the system control or MES (manufacturing execution system) has to be implemented in the planning algorithm as well. And this is where the unique feature of VarioBatch®.MES come into play: With its process control logic already implemented in the automation components and its process cycles managed via workflows, VarioBatch®.MES allows you to run the production in fast motion in a mirrored testing system. This way, all automation components are put into simulation mode and the production system is run in a “sand box” of sorts. The simulation result reflects the real production process and helps you recognize shortages in resources in advance.
Warehouse management is often situated as a grey area in between the fields of responsibility of ERP (enterprise resource planning) and MES systems. Intersections between systems are common in this area. Integration into both systems is considerably facilitated and sped up the more flexible the respective data models are and the more clearcut the separation between the software layers is. VarioBatch®.MES takes a lead role in the implementability of such scenarios.
# guest admittance and on-site list
# route planning
# order picking
# acceptance of goods and loading control
Like warehouse management logistics is an interdisciplinary matter. Planning tasks are commonly carried out on ERP level, while operations are performed with MES. iPlus affords you the freedom of adapting features to best suit your company’s needs.
In the end, system control is the task of VarioBatch®.MES – you can count on that. As in production, all processes are managed via workflows and, as a result, can be customized. Transport routes tend to be very complex in big production facilities containing many conveying elements and junctions. This often poses a challenge to programmers trying to implement all that in the PLC (programmable logic controller) programme. Especially if new junctions are built in mechanically, costs might explode since a PLC is not originally meant to manage such tasks.
That is the reason why iPlus comes with an intelligent route management system by default. The whole relations network that connects the process modules is configured via user interface. Based on routing rules set by the user in the workflows the best routes are determined prior to the start of each materials transportation process and uploaded dynamically to the PLC control. Clients are now able to modify and expand their facilities how and whenever they like without having to rely on the help of a programmer for the complex adaption of the programming.
Barcodes and QR codes, RFID technology, scanner connection, label printing etc. are no challenge for VarioBatch®.MES. Manual processes and user guidance in material supply, lot recommendation and lot validation are carried out by means of workflow technology. This way, VarioBatch does not miss one lot and no lot ends up in the wrong product / batch. With materials transportation and processing completed each batch can be traced completely both forward and backward. Batch tracing is such an integral part of VarioBatch®.MES that you can initiate tracing from anywhere in the programme.
Automated sampling, connection to laboratory equipment and lab systems, lab order templates such as the definition of measurement and limit values, linkage to material management and batch tracing.
GIP provides solutions for:
We have many years’ experience in the following food industry sectors:
We have many years’ experience in the following agrarian industry sectors:
We have many years’ experience in the following building industry sectors:
GIP is your one-stop supplier of comprehensive automation concepts for the implementation of highquality process and production control
Our range of services:
We design and build control cabinets of any size - from the smallest sub-distributor to complete production control systems with a power input of up to 1600 A.
We take your existing control systems into account when selecting components. This ensures your spare parts stock can be kept as small as possible.
Control cabinets can be designed and implemented using either conventional wiring or bus technology.
We have extensive knowledge in the field of hazardous area control systems thanks to many years’ experience in the chemical industry. Our range of services covers all aspects, from the selection and design of control components over project management/implementation to preparing for the approval inspection by the TÜV.
The introduction of VarioBatch is largely done through customizing. Since each production plant has a certain degree of individualization, customizing also has its limits. For example, when it comes to the connection of proprietary interfaces, it must ultimately be programmed. These include e.g. the connection of printers, control scales, ERP-interfaces, bi-tools and measuring instruments.
For such scenarios our iPlus-framework is just predestined for this, because such custom add-on programming are updateable.
Our service therefore includes not only customizing but also any custom programming. We are of the opinion that the software system must adapt to the company or the production plant and not not vice versa.
We develop software on field level for the following systems and devices: