The Research Training Group (RTG) is concerned with the design of human-machine cooperation in Cyber-Physical Production systems (CPPS). CPPS consist of a combination of networked digital (cyber) and physical system components. Their architecture enables system changes to be made within very short time spans. The resulting flexibility requires new forms of human-technology cooperation. Therefore, the RTG contrasts the prevailing technology-centered approaches with a human-centered perspective on the design of CPPS.

The central concern is to gain insights into the beneficial design of CPPS with regard to the competence, health and confidence of operators. Three thematic clusters are the focus of interest: adaptive strategies for changeable systems, the development and maintenance of competence, and the acquisition and assessment of human states. On these topics, a team of engineers, psychologists, and work scientists will combine and adapt theoretical concepts that have previously been addressed only within the confines of relatively independent research traditions. The team will develop new methods and evaluate them in prototype systems to establish an empirical basis for design and interventions. The research will take place in two application domains, modular process plants and mobile agricultural systems. This will enable the generalization of the findings and solution approaches to a broad range of CPPS domains.

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One major major outcome of this RTG is the paper “Conducive Design as an Iterative Process for Engineering CPPS”, which was published and presented at the AHFE 2022. In the paper, we present the conceptualization and the general design approach to achieve a conducive – which means a helpful and useful focusing on the humans capabilities and needs – design of cyber physical production system. Additionally, this process is highlighted by describing an example where this process was put into practice.

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