Smart Factory Institute to open in Tennessee

  • August 11, 2021
  • William Payne

The first US-based Smart Factory Institute will open in October in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Institute will be the first American campus of an international network created by the Deutsche Messe Technology Academy which includes one in Germany, three in China, and one to open next year in South Africa, all dedicated to spreading Industry 4.0 practices and technologies.

The Tennessee Institute will be operated by Peak Performance Inc together with the Volkswagen Academy Chattanooga, the Deutsche Messe Technology Academy, the Tennessee Manufacturers Association and the University of Tennessee Chattanooga.

The Smart Factory Institute is a US institute that will provide manufacturers with connections, collaborative relationships and certifications for improving manufacturing processes by providing them with access to the latest technology in advanced manufacturing.

The Institute is a part of a network of international academies, operated by the Deutsche Messe Technology Academy in Hanover, Germany, a joint project between Deutsche Messe and the Volkswagen Group Academy. Thomas Rilke, Division Manager of Deutsche Messe Technology Academy, said, “We are particularly excited about the opening of our first Technology Academy in Chattanooga, Tennessee. As we continue to expand our global network, it was only natural to open a location in the United States, one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world.”

Since its inception in 2009, the Deutsche Messe Technology Academy has built an international network of production technologies across the world. These academies, located in Hanover (Germany), Foshan, Nanjing, Jinan (China) and Port Elizabeth (South Africa, opening 2022) focus on specific areas of manufacturing technology.

Denise Rice, President & CEO of Peak Performance Inc., said, “COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of Industry 4.0 and the Smart Factory Institute will ease the transition for manufacturers by facilitating intensive networking between suppliers and users of key technologies to optimise production processes, leading the economic recovery of business and industry in the region. The Smart Factory Institute will provide remote and online, relevant, leading-edge training for manufacturing workers that will up-skill and re-skill workers for the jobs that the technology advancements bring.”

The Smart Factory Institute will work closely with the University of Tennessee Chattanooga’s Industrial and Organisational Psychology program to provide subject matter experts and best practices to approaching the workforce advancements that are a result of the up-skilling of workers required by Industry 4.0.