Potential of digitalization in mechanical engineering

The digital revolution has long been underway in mechanical engineering, and experts predict that digital networking will become a key success factor for companies in the future.  

In practice, however, the transition is fraught with major challenges. Whether it is production processes, supply chains or administrative tasks, digitalization affects the entire corporate structure.   

Until now, software and databases have grown mostly locally. This means Quality management within a company uses different standards than the R&D department or the service team. At first glance, this seems logical, since each area has its own requirements. 

Networked systems are required for digitization in mechanical engineering to become a catalyst for innovation. When dealing with data, the motto is: centralized collection, decentralized use. Manufacturer-independent interfaces are one of the most important prerequisites here.  

Making good use of digital tools in planning and production

Each company must define the right level of digitalization for itself. Human skills remain at the core of engineering in the digital age.  

Connectivity makes manufacturers adaptable. Digital systems help you respond more quickly to market changes or new regulatory requirements. For example, sensors record emissions from production. Thanks to fully integrated data processing, you can quickly make product adjustments to reduce a component's environmental footprint. 

An overview of key aspects of the digitalization of mechanical engineering:  

  • Big Data: Digital transformation brings unprecedented availability of data. In the course of digitalization, mechanical engineering companies are therefore expanding their software competencies. Artificial intelligence helps to recognize structures in large data sets. Among other things, this is revolutionizing inspection methods in quality control.  
  • Transparency of internal processes: Cameras, sensors, gateways - innovative technologies make it possible to digitally map a company's own production. In this way, the entire value chain can be analyzed. The integration of real-time data into ERP systems ensures maximum transparency.
  • Quality and condition control: Self-correcting systems facilitate quality control. The comparison of actual values with target values stored in the cloud optimizes inspection processes.   
  • Lower production costs: The impact of the Internet of Things (IoT) on mechanical engineering is manifold. As networked machines communicate with each other in so-called closed-loop systems, it streamlines manufacturing. This leads to financial savings. In the future, you will adapt systems at different locations to each other via the Internet. Outsourcing is also changing fundamentally. The risk of losing product quality by outsourcing work decreases. Your inspectors can check IoT machines in real time, regardless of location.   
  • New business areas: The digitization of mechanical engineering means that products and services are increasingly merging. For your customers, it is a sign of quality if you as the manufacturer accompany the machine after delivery. Whether it's maintenance, software updates or configuration service - networked systems allow customers to benefit from your expertise in their everyday lives.

Application areas of digital monitoring and testing processes

In mechanical engineering, non-destructive material testing represents one of the central methods for quality assurance. As in other industries, data acquisition and documentation are nowadays carried out using networked tools.   

In detail, however, it becomes apparent that companies use these tools in a manner reminiscent of earlier analog processes: Employees transfer data manually into Excel spreadsheets. There are no software solutions for evaluating image data, and communication with other responsible parties takes place by mail.   

The administrative effort involved in inspection processes is therefore enormous. In addition, the results are error-prone and not reproducible.   

This is where digital monitoring and inspection methods come in. Modern technology allows you to process recorded data more easily. For example, intelligent systems automatically note relevant production values in the product file and the inspection software forwards the results to the responsible employees in an optimally visualized form.   

Whether quality controller, engineer or production manager - the digitization of non-destructive testing (NDT) is revolutionizing everyday work in mechanical engineering.   

Basically, there are two different objectives of digital inspection processes:  

1. Control of the product: regardless of the inspection modality, you specify which test data you want to record. You automatically transfer the measured values to the product file and to a central archive database. Especially with high-tech products, it is essential that you can access measured values of individual components at any time. 

2. Control of the plant: Automated maintenance and wear detection are important aspects of NDT for manufacturing machines. At the same time, you control the efficiency of the machine and reduce energy costs. In addition, you keep an eye on the precision of the process.  

Mechanical engineering companies complete the digital transformation with DIMATE

DIMATE PACS digitizes NDT inspection according to your company's needs. We rely on fully integrable solutions - including open file formats.   

With our software solutions, we support almost all non-destructive testing methods, such as digital radiography or ultrasonic testing. In an individually configured interface, you manage inspection jobs and view archive data.   

Artificial intelligence supports you in analyzing inspection data. If desired, we can be your marketplace for your special AI or BI projects.  

Compatible interfaces ensure that ERP integration runs smoothly. In this way, you integrate our PACS as image data management software into the overarching digitization strategy of your mechanical engineering company.   

With SGS and Applus RTD, leading companies from the inspection and testing sector are already among our customers. In addition, we support market leaders in the energy sector with DIMATE PACS, including BP and Aker Solutions.   

Would you like to learn more about the DIMATE PACS and its many advantages?
Request a demo and we will show you how you can digitize your inspection processes and thus save time and money.

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Case Study

Huge success for bp

bp established a continuous digital inspection process by using DIMATE PACS – including the digital evaluation and transmission of quality-assured inspection data to the RBI.


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The DIMATE CCM digital lifetime documentation provides a 360° view of the component. All data regarding a component – images, handouts, test reports – are available in the software.


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The DIMATE Viewer Pro now has a new feature for stitching RT images: the images are registered and digitally stitched together to form an overall image.

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