Siemens expands the Connected Curriculum program


Connected Curriculum, Siemens’ innovative education program integrating technology into the higher education curriculum, has expanded its university partnerships, bringing its total to 10 leading UK universities.

Launched in 2019, the initiative helps academic staff adapt Siemens industrial hardware, software and learning materials to develop critical Industry 4.0 skills for their students.

Sheffield Hallam University and the University of the West of England (UWE) are the latest universities to sign up for the scheme. They join the existing Connected Curriculum university community comprising the University of Sheffield, Manchester Metropolitan University, Liverpool John Moores University, Middlesex University, University of Teesside, University of Exeter, University of Coventry and the University of Salford.

Using sample programs, case studies, and real-world problem-solving tutorials, more than 470 learners were armed with real-world industry experience and new digital skills.

“As we move forward into the technology-driven Fourth Industrial Revolution, there has never been more need for creative and innovative thinkers to help create, understand and implement emerging technologies,” said Brian Holliday, Director CEO of Siemens Digital Industries UK.

“With this need for more in-depth and practical technological knowledge in mind, it is fitting that we were able to add six more universities to the program. We were able to develop course content and hands-on projects around industrial automation to fit seamlessly into existing university curricula.

The Connected Curriculum initiative provides students with access to simulation software from Siemens, including NX Mechatronics Concept Designer, Tecnomatix Plant Simulation, PLCSIM Advanced, TIA Portal, MindSphere and Mendix.

Since its inception, universities have used the program to engage with dozens of companies on a variety of projects.

At the University of Exeter, learners helped Chudleigh, Devon-based manufacturer Dana TM4 improve its production line.

The project involved using Siemens Tecnomatix Plant Simulation software to create a “digital twin” of the production line to help identify process improvements.

Daniel Wilks, Advanced Manufacturing Engineering Manager, Dana TM4, said, “This proves the value learners have gained by using Siemens industrial software and shows how quickly they can use these tools to gain valuable insights for local manufacturers. .

“Using digital twin technology, learners identified improvements in manufacturing productivity and provided the company with a range of alternative production line configurations and information.

“It’s great to see students using Siemens technology and giving us an outside perspective on our production units. The exercise helps us reinforce our own conclusions and move forward with our planned upgrades and changes to increase productivity. »

The company was so impressed with these solutions that they want to continue working with learners and plan to deploy these findings to global manufacturing sites.

“Students learn about current software and hardware, then show real-world companies how they could benefit from using the technology and gain more learning experience working with companies,” Wilks added. .

Teesside University is also using Connected Curriculum to forge links with businesses and support local SMEs in the development of bespoke MindSphere applications.

Alongside this, the University of Teesside has also appointed Ross Caddens, UK Head of Presales and Business Development for Siemens Digital Industries Software, as Visiting Professor in Cyber-Physical Design. Through this award funded by the Royal Academy of Engineering, Professor Caddens will work with staff to directly support students on a range of cutting-edge technology projects.

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