Closed-loop digital pipeline


Flexible and modular manufacturing of large components, that’s what PeneloPe is all about. A novel methodology, linking product-centric data management and production planning in a closed-loop digital pipeline. PeneloPe works on developing technologies, such as simulation models, online control, data analytics and Artificial Intelligence. Our engineers are specialised in complex programming, using large industrial robots to implement and test data-connectivity and manufacturing intelligence. In this European project we collaborate with 30 partners for cleaner aviation.


The projects main objective is to develop a closed-loop digital pipeline for the manufacturing of high-precision large-scale parts. In the end, new methods of manufacturing will result in:

  • A reduction of 15% in production costs
  • A decrease in production time of 20%
  • A better use of raw materials
  • A direct reduction of up to 22% of energy consumption

Demonstrator and didactic factory

The pilotline at SAM XL will initially focus on assembly, inspection and finishing a full size composite fuselage section and wing section. Our team of software and hardware engineers work closely together, using large industrial robots and our enormous gantry robot as automation platforms. They are designing a zero-defect manufacturing strategy based on online control and quality assurance. We will use the demonstrator to design, develop and test different manufacturing technologies. The infrastructure at SAM XL will also be used as a didactic factory for workforce training and follow-up innovation. To improve manufacturing techniques on a large scale, we believe sharing knowledge is essential. Therefore, we are creating a European network of didactic factories. Within this network, we discuss and share our methodologies, thus reinforcing Europe’s economical position in the manufacturing industry.

The exchange between TU Delft scientists, SAM XL’s highly skilled software and robotics engineers, together with the 30 European collaboration partner will lead to creating new manufacturing methods with self-learning robots.


PeneloPe Consortium: TU Delft, Aimen Technology Centre, ESI Group, Technology Transfer System, DGH Robotica, Comau SPA, Airborne Technology Centre, KVE Composite Group, Innovative Security Solutions SRL, Atos, PSC, JASO, V2I, K-loops, UniMore, Universade de Coimbra, LMS, Tecnalia, TNO, CEA, BIBA, Fraunhofer IGP, IPC, NLR, Cecimo, Rina Consulting, FundingBox, Idesa, Fokker, VDL Bus & Group, MV Werften Wismar.


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 958303.

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Duration: 2020 – 2024