Innovation explained: Digital twin

When we hear about Industry 4.0, we often hear the term “digital twin”. But what exactly is a digital twin? If you want to explain this development of the fourth industrial revolution, you can compare it to a complex virtual model.

Digital twins could be cars, engines, robots or any other physical object that requires dedicated planning. Connected sensors on the physical object collect data that is transmitted to the virtual simulation. Anyone looking at the Digital Twin can now see how they would behave in the real world, allowing them to anticipate and address potentially dangerous situations or problems.

The digital twin is thus an important tool that helps engineers, innovators or planners to understand not only how products and technologies work, but also how they react in an emergency. The analysis of the data, combined with the knowledge of the experts, helps to make good predictions and help the company to be more efficient.

Why digital twins will be the backbone of industry in the future (Source: Siemens)


In our current information society, we can learn and try out better than ever before without producing costs or putting employees at risk with product innovations.

Thus, the digital twin is an engineer’s helper in visualizing products, refining analytics, and troubleshooting distributed devices.

But how does the digital twin really work? The system uses data from connected sensors to fully visualize the plant’s processes and pre-plan all life cycles from testing to deployment. By incorporating all data, both from the machines and the situation on site, engineers get a complete overview of the asset’s performance.

Digital twins give industrial halls, warehouses and companies unprecedented insight into the performance of their products. A digital twin helps identify potential defects, increase efficiency and improve customer satisfaction.

Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker is an innovation profiler, future strategist and media expert who helps companies understand the opportunities behind technologies such as artificial intelligence for the next five to ten years. He is the founder of the consulting firm "Alexander Pinker - Innovation Profiling", the innovation marketing agency "innovate! communication" and the news platform "Medialist Innovation". He is also the author of three books and a lecturer at the Technical University of Würzburg-Schweinfurt.

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