German Center of Vocational Excellence in Mechatronics at Festo
The Center of Vocational Excellence in Mechatronics at Festo in Esslingen, Germany, is now the official national training center for the German mechatronics team at the WorldSkills championships. "We do not only qualify our own apprentices, but also apprentices who will make up the national mechatronics team at the next WorldSkills Shanghai 2022," says Stefan Dietl, Head of Training at Festo.
In the future, Germany's best mechatronics engineers of any company will train for international vocational competitions at the Festo Center of Vocational Excellence in Mechatronics. The basis for the WorldSkills competitions and mechatronics training in general are the Modular Production Systems (MPS) of Festo Didactic. WorldSkills has been relying on this mechatronic learning solution used in the competitions since 1991.
Modular Production System as a Basis
On the MPS learning system, apprentices and students learn basic skills as well as specialist knowledge in automation technology and mechatronics. As a miniaturized production line, the stations provide an insight into the interaction of successive processes in an industrial production environment. The tasks consist of setting up and commissioning the plant: connecting the components, installing the sensors, and programming the processes. These essential skills form the basis for further qualification in state-of-the-art Industry 4.0 technologies such as control technology, web shop, artificial intelligence, and robotics at the more complex MPS learning factory.
Festo is a global player and an independent family-owned company with headquarters in Esslingen am Neckar, Germany. Festo has set standards in industrial automation technology and technical education ever since its establishment, thereby making a contribution to sustainable development of the environment, the economy and society. The company supplies pneumatic and electrical automation technology to 300,000 customers of factory and process automation in over 35 industries. The LifeTech sector with medical technology and laboratory automation is becoming increasingly important. The products and services are available in 176 countries. With about 20,000 employees in over 250 branch offices in 61 countries worldwide, Festo achieved a turnover of around €2.84 billion in 2020. Each year around 8 % of this turnover is invested in research and development. In this learning company, 1.5 % of turnover is invested in basic and further training. Festo Didactic SE is a leading provider of technical education and training and offers its customers worldwide comprehensive digital and physical learning solutions in the industrial environment.