Zug – LafargeHolcim intends to modernize its cement plants through automation and artificial intelligence, among other technologies. To this end, it will increasingly work together with startups. New technologies are being tested in the Siggenthal cement plant.

LafargeHolcim is modernizing its global network of over 270 integrated cement plants and grinding stations across more than 50 countries. The group with headquarters in Zug is rolling out Industry 4.0 technologies. It will be utilizing automation technologies and robotics, artificial intelligence, predictive maintenance and digital twin technologies for its entire production process, as was reported in its press release. This will improve operational efficiency by 15 to 20 percent compared to a conventional cement plant.

In the upgrade of its production plants, LafargeHolcim will increasingly partner with technology startups as well as both manufacturing and software companies. It has launched the platform LH MAQER “to identify the most impactful technologies”. The company has already embarked on a successful partnership with the startup Flyability from Western Switzerland for the use of drones to conduct inspections in the plants. LafargeHolcim initially intends to trial the new technologies in the Siggenthal cement plant, before rolling out to the other factories.

“Transforming the way we produce cement is one of the focus areas of our digitalization strategy,” explained Solomon Baumgartner Aviles, Global Head Cement Manufacturing, adding that the new initiative “will turn Industry 4.0 into reality at our plants”. 

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