Modern manufacturing processes differ greatly from those used five years ago. Most production lines have grown gradually and comprise cells from different manufacturers. At the end of a product lifecycle they are normally no longer usable, since they are tailored to a specific process. Until now, that was also the case at Continental, an automotive parts supplier. At the Regensburg plant, the company manufactures engine, transmission, and electrical systems, airbag control units, camera-based assistance systems, sensors, and actuators.
Starting in early 2017, the new Continental production lines at the Regensburg plant will consist of multiple interlinked standard cells. A subprocess is integrated into each of these standard cells. Because the cells feature an integrated design, the processes can be replaced and reconfigured at any time.