Valid machining data for peace of mind

The Austrian Salzkammergut resort region is full of lakes, mountains and culinary delights. It’s also home to RO-RA Aviation Systems GmbH, a high-tech forge and aeronautics supplier. To ensure that its young team has its highly automated manufacturing processes under control, the company collects machine data using the StateMonitor software from the HEIDENHAIN Digital Shop Floor.

You can sense the vibe as soon as you’ve entered the buildings of RO-RA Aviation Systems: This is a place where a young, motivated team is testing the limits of machining. It’s not just the company’s impressive 28 milling and turning centers but also its roughly 90% automation rate combined with a digitalization strategy driven by Head of Production Sebastian Pöckl and IT Specialist Stefan Holzleithner. A key part of this strategy is the StateMonitor software.

"Many parts are machined at over 90% cutting capacity straight from a blank. The combination of special alloys, high removal rates, special tools and longer machine uptime makes our manufacturing processes highly cost-intensive,” says Sebastian Pöckl, adding: “So we obviously want to know what is going on with our machines and where we can optimize. This is vital to our success and our competitiveness."

Sebastian Pöckl, Head of Production

From guesswork to knolwedge

That’s why the company has made daily shopfloor meetings second-nature. Every day at 2 p.m., at the changeover from early to late shift, all staff from the different production islands gather together. “In the past, we only gave oral reports about the previous 24 hours,” recalls Pöckl, adding: “Of course, these reports were highly subjective and sometimes incomplete.” And the handwriting in the written reports was difficult to read, with no chance for digital evaluation. “We had a rough idea of what had occurred and were able to optimize here and there, but we were a long way from certain knowledge,” he says.

StateMonitor for everyone

That all changed suddenly in 2020 with the introduction of the HEIDENHAIN StateMonitor software for the milling machines on the RO-RA shop floor. “Every employee has access to StateMonitor at his machine and therefore a clear overview of his project’s status. A large screen with an overview of the machines is now present at every shopfloor meeting,” says Stefan Holzleithner, describing the visible changes to the shop floor. The workflows at the now 11 milling centers have changed as well: “We now track all machine messages, which allows us to describe and comment on every machine interruption,” says Holzleithner. “But this is only required when a machine is down for longer than 30 minutes,” adds Pöckl.

An overview down to the article level

This has had noticeable effects on the company. Pöckl continues: “For our milling machines, we now have valid data about interruptions and run times. When it comes to the production status, we have an overview at the level of individual article numbers in a easy-toanalyze form.” As a result, this StateMonitor data now plays a key role beyond the daily shopfloor meetings. “For example, we can now easily analyze run times and adapt our production planning based on the times achieved for other projects, or analyze and optimize our tool usage,” says Pöckl, referring to the information that reveals optimization potential for two key cost factors on the RO-RA shop floor.

Due to their positive experience with StateMonitor after its introduction in the milling department, Pöckl and Holzleithner are already planning the next steps. “We also want to use the maintenance planning and messenger features, as well as connect our lathes to StateMonitor. Both projects are planned for 2024,” they say. Once again, the Digital Shop Floor team from HEIDENHAIN will provide active support.


Founded in 2006, this Austrian company has grown into a major aeronautics supplier in less than 20 years. At the Austrian town of Schörfling am Attersee, its 210-member workforce manufactures parts for engine and aircraft manufacturers. The company specializes in the complex machining of titanium and special alloys such as Inconel in highly automated processes that meet the rigorous standards of the aeronautics industry. This includes both customer-designed parts as well as self-developed ones.