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KIckBio-Workshop: Artificial Intelligence

As a highlight of the first project period within our EU-funded project KIckBio, we dealt with the current topic “Artificial Intelligence” (AI) in the third workshop on July 19 and 20.


The development of AI is an attempt to teach a computer program complex ways of thinking that were previously only known by humans. The computer learns from experience by recognizing patterns in data, evaluating them, and adjusting the algorithm to react appropriately in a new situation. The idea of AI has been pursued since the 1930s. Nowadays, the breakthrough is attributed to the increased computing power of computers. In the decades before, computing power was too insufficient to realize complex applications. In addition, attempts are being made provide easier access to the use of neural networks. Whereas in the past only IT experts could bring an AI to application, today some AI programs in Python, such as Keras, are already designed in such a way that interested engineers can successfully use this as a tool. Moreover, many required programs are provided free of charge. Artificial neural networks belong to the field of machine learning (ML), which independently develops contexts for learning.


The KIckBio project aims to use artificial intelligence to optimize the production process of nanocellulose manufacturing based on beech wood fibers, supported by a digital twin. Process development is about achieving the defined goals with as little effort as possible. Goals include reducing the amount of energy required or shortening the manufacturing time so that producers can produce more material with the same equipment.


During the two-day event, participants gained an insight into the fundamentals as well as the background of artificial intelligence. Various expert presentations from corporate groups as well as medium-sized companies and specific practical examples provided a better understanding of the topic. A special highlight of the event included a joint tour of the KIckBio plant in the buildings of Technikum Laubholz. During the tour, the participants were informed about the structure of the plant, the individual elements as well as the concrete process handling in the plant, so that an understanding of the entire production process was guaranteed.


In order to provide the participants sufficient space for questions and discussion, various topic tables were offered within the framework of an open space. These were supervised by the respective experts, so that it was possible to clarify explicit questions in a direct exchange.


We would like to record two very successful workshop days and thank all speakers. For the coming period, we are looking forward to further events on exciting topics and a dynamic exchange of ideas.


We are excited to start the second stage of the project in December 2023. The focus of this stage focuses on process optimization through an AI, supported by a Digital Twin.


We are pleased to be working on this project funded by our project sponsors ERDF (ERDF funds are part of the Union’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic), the State of Baden-Württemberg and the European Union.

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