The goal of the vf-OS Project is to develop an Open Operating System for Virtual Factories (vf-OS), composed by a Virtual Factory System Kernel (vf-SK), a Virtual Factory Application Programming Interface (vf-API) and a Virtual Factory Middleware (vf-MW) specifically designed for the factory of the future. An Open Applications Development Kit (vf-OAK) will be provided to software developers for deploying Manufacturing Smart Applications for industrial users, using the Manufacturing Applications Store (vf-mApp) at the Virtual Factory Platform (vf-P).

 

The Virtual Factory Platform (vf-P) will be an economical multi-sided market platform with the aim of creating value by enabling interactions between four customer groups: a) Software Developers (independent or within individual manufacturers) which will build Manufacturing Apps either through innovation or from manufacturing user demand; b) Manufacturing Users which will explore the marketplace for already created solutions, ready to be run on the vf-OS; c) ICT Providers which will provide ICT interfaces and manufacturing connections; and d) Service Providers (vf-OS innovators and third parties) will make available services (hosting, storage, connected cloud services, etc.) including those based on developed solutions.  

 

The Virtual Factory Platform will provide a range of services to the connected factory of the future to integrate better manufacturing and logistics processes. Manufacturing Applications Store (vf-mApp) will be open to software developers who, using the free Open Applications Development Kit provided, will be able to quickly develop and deploy smart applications to enable and optimise communication and collaboration among supply networks of all manufacturing sectors in all the stages manufacturing and logistic processes: demand forecast, planning, supply, manufacturing, distribution, storage, and replacement / recycling.

 

vf-OS aims to become the reference system software for managing factory related computer hardware and software resources and providing common services for factory computational programs. This operating system will be the component of the system software in a real factory system where all factory application programs will run. This includes full management through virtualisation of the whole factory and related supply networks, including time-sharing schedule tasks for efficient use of the system. The Service Providers, as managers of the Virtual Factory Platform (vf-P) and the Manufacturing Applications Store (vf-mApp), will guarantee the quality of the Manufacturing Smart Applications and will define a clear revenue business model for the complementors.