CTF Finance Centre, Guangzhou, China
86 elevators, height: 530 m
Big cities, major tasks
By 2030, nine billion people are expected to live on planet Earth – about 70 percent of them in urban areas. This is why cities are increasingly determining the development of our planet. Urbanization is thus one of the biggest challenges for now – and in the future.
Urbanization is a burden on existing infrastructures, as a city should be sustainable, efficient, nearly CO2-neutral and livable – in all areas of life. Architects, city planners and decision-makers from the authorities must therefore develop new concepts for urban life. They are also demanding the use of intelligent solutions from mechanical engineering and building technology.
Solutions for the cities of tomorrow
Intelligent building automation systems reduce energy consumption without compromising on comfort
Optimized heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems ensure lowest possible energy consumption
Climate-neutral buildings by using renewable energy
The sky is the limit with state-of-the-art elevator technology
Modern waste management protects the environment
Low CO2 emissions fuels for freight and passenger transport
State-of-the-art facilities ensure maximum security
Mobile with the electric car
Clean drinking water is our most precious resource
Dr. Peter HugSpokesman, VDMA Building Technology Forum
“Successful urbanization enables balancing smart technologies from mechanical engineering with building technology and their integration into people’s everyday lives.”
Solutions from mechanical engineering and building technology
The challenges of urbanization are tremendous: Commercial, residential and recreational areas must be redesigned as well as the design of public space. New cities are to be developed with the greatest consideration for sustainability and climate protection. The urban planners have a great deal to do – for example, meeting the requirements for security, comfort and affordable housing in the metropolitan areas. Within this tension curve, mechanical engineering and building technology must prove themselves and help to develop the solutions for tomorrow and to meet the needs of the future generations.
Digitalization in the building sector
In the course of urbanization, whole cities will be digitalized. What significance does this have for the buildings of tomorrow? And how are our lives changing? Uwe Großmann, Chairman of VDMA Forum Technical Building Equipment and Head Solution & Services Portfolio for Germany at Siemens Building Technologies, answers these questions and more.
Interview with Uwe GroßmannREAD MORE
Manager, VDMA Valves Trade Association
Since 2012, Stefan Oberdörfer has been working as a Manager for VDMA Valves, specializing in the field of building valves. Drinking water hygiene is a topic of particular focus. This is also the focus of the website (www.trinkwasser-wissen.net > Gesundheit > Gefahren), which was created by political scientists.
Who observes the observers?
Intelligent systems will soon be controlling our cities. However, they must also be monitored and controlled themselves. This can be done by using monitoring instruments, which in the future must not only provide detailed information on consumption and costs but also serve to improve efficiency.
The lifelines of the city
For people to be able to live and work in a city, it needs the following: functioning waste management, possibilities for passenger and goods transport and above all, a clean drinking water supply. “Drinking water is our most precious resource”, sais Stefan Oberdoerfer, VDMA Valves Manager. Therefore, it must be ensured that in a future urban environment, it can be safely supplied, distributed and at a constant high quality.
Every drop is preciousREAD MORE
Bailong elevator, Zhangjiajie National Forest Park,
Hunan Province, China
What challenges for city logistics do you see in terms of urban development worldwide?
Logistics coordinate the bridging of distance and time. In order to reduce the lead times, we must shorten the routes by moving closer to the cities and at the same time increasing the speed. But in fact, we are getting slower. In some cities today, the average speed is already under 20 kilometers per hour. The trend towards life in the city means that the traffic load continues to rise, despite traffic restrictions, emissions stickers, and vehicle restrictions. The effect is a slow deceleration. The trend towards individualization has also been underestimated. Not only private individuals, but also trade and commerce will use the individual delivery options so that in the future, we will have to deal with a strong increase in inner-city delivery traffic on the one hand. On the other hand, with a considerable fluctuating supply volume, for example at Christmas.
What kind of solutions does city logistics need in order to be well prepared for the future?
A comprehensive concept is very important; one which is based on the pooling of the shipments, independently from the service provider. Even so it is first important to develop a concept that is economically reasonable for the individual service provider. For example, cooperative solutions such as city hubs or small storage and handling facilities are feasible – something similar to packing stations. According to districts, goods could thus be delivered together. We are actually talking about concepts that have already existed for 20 years. For their cost-benefit analysis, however, there is a shortage of viable business and cooperation models. Here, politics and cities need to get involved in creating appropriate incentives.
What is the contribution of intralogistics and materials handling manufacturers?
Intralogistics is indispensable for any form of distribution centers or goods transfer systems. The first delivery vehicles are already on the market, which have a small intralogistics system on board to automatically transfer and outsource parcels. In this way, the driver always gets the right package directly in his hand and does not have to search for it in the storage room.
It is also possible that containers with appropriate hardware and software will be installed in the cities as distribution points from which shipments and goods can be distributed to the end customers.
For security purposes and due to current legislation, I do not think that drones will fly autonomously in the urban environment. However, drones which move along the ground and change to flight mode only in secure areas, such as a high-rise building, tunnels and pipes or over open fields, could be an option. I am sure that in the medium term, a whole series of new and innovative products and solutions will be developed. This would solve many problems in the cities of the future.
Prof. Dr. Michael ten Hompel
Prof. Dr. Michael ten Hompel holds the chair of Materials Handling and Warehousing at TU Dortmund University and is Managing Director at Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics IML.
No life without logistics
What would a city without logistics be like? The shops would be empty – from the small kiosk to the bakery on the corner to the supermarket. Gas stations would no longer have any fuel. There would be no drugs in the pharmacies or hospitals. The impact would make city life impossible. Logistics are often invisible, and yet so important.
It is not just about the supply of trade and private households in the city. It’s also about the questions like: How are loads and goods transported quickly and safely? How do these get from the manufacturer to the city? How does the online retailer know where an article is located in his warehouse and how many of it he has? The answer to these questions is called intralogistics.
Here too, the mechanical and plant engineering industry makes a valuable contribution to the sensitive system. Especially in logistics, the cities of the future are faced with challenges, as Prof. Dr. Michael ten Hompel reports.
Logistics keep life in the cityREAD MORE
The city of tomorrow
The development of humanity will increasingly focus on the urban environment. In order to address this challenge, the cities of the future must not only be smart, they must also combine communication, infrastructure, trade and logistics with economy and ecology as well as the personal needs of the residents. Smart cities must also be able to permit various speeds of life in addition to different functionalities. The machinery and plant engineering industry can make a significant contribution to this. But every single one of us must do their bit, so that we can live flexibly and responsibly together.
Manager, VDMA Forum Technical Building Equipment
Miriam Braun has been managing the VDMA Forum Technical Building Equipment since 2015. Her main focus is on pooling the competences of those areas within the VDMA which supply their products and services to the building technology sector (residential buildings and non-residential buildings).
Public Relations at the Materials Handling and Intralogistics Association
Juliane Friedrich has been responsible for the communication of the Materials Handling and Intralogistics Association since 2012. She focuses, for example, on trends such as Industrie 4.0, globalization or urbanization as well as their impact on the intralogistics sector.
Dr. Peter Hug
Spokesman, VDMA Forum Technical Building Equipment
Peter Hug is Managing Director of the Building Automation Association and Spokesman of the VDMA Forum Technical Building Equipment. He holds a doctorate in economics and also manages the European Industrial Association eu.bac (European Building Automation and Controls Association).
Managing Director of the Elevator and Escalator Association as well as the Materials Handling and Intralogistics Association.
Sascha Schmel is Managing Director of the VDMA Elevator and Escalator Association as well as Materials Handling and Intralogistics Association. In both associations, he is strongly involved in the challenges of urbanization.