MRO Magazine

Siemens to take Exider technology train around North America

Chicago, IL -- Siemens Energy & Automation of Atlanta, Ga., is bringing its Exider technology train to Chicago for...


February 5, 2004
By MRO Magazine

Chicago, IL — Siemens Energy & Automation of Atlanta, Ga., is bringing its Exider technology train to Chicago for National Manufacturing Week Feb. 23-26, 2004, kicking off a 10-city, U.S. coast-to-coast tour of the 1,000-ft exhibit on rails. It will come to Canada shortly after the U.S. tour wraps up in May 2004.

Siemens will use the sleek, blue train as a high-tech platform to showcase its products, solutions and services. Jammed with technology, the 14 rail cars will house 224 plasma screens and monitors, 189 DVD players, four servers, nine miles of electrical cables and almost two miles of data lines.

Rolling coast-to-coast, the "trade show on rails" will put all that technology to use to simulate specific customer applications in pharmaceutical and chemical industries, automobile manufacturing, commercial power distribution and other customer sectors. For instance, in the process automation section, visitors will pass through a tube (see photo) where different process industry planning steps are demonstrated using animated video installations. Later, visitors will find themselves in a simulated control room, overseeing the entire production process in realistic detail.

"It’s a customer event on wheels," said John Dimmerling, Siemens Energy & Automation director of marketing communications and Exider project coordinator. "The technology and applications that customers can get close to in this unique environment are fantastic.


First stop will be McCormick Center and National Manufacturing Week. This is the one stop where the rolling exhibit will come off its wheels. The nine exhibit cars that normally travel by rail will be brought in from the Windy City chill for the warmth of massive McCormick Center. NMW’s anticipated 30,000 exhibit attendees can visit "cars" dedicated to such customer themes as process and discrete manufacturing, machine tool components, commercial and residential power distribution, and engineering services.

Siemens is betting that the Exider can continue cutting through cultural differences and racking up staggering numbers as it has around the world. Since its rollout in Europe in 2002, the Exider has toured more than 120 cities in 22 countries and hosted more than 100,000 visitors, including its most recent 16 city, three-month tour of China.

According to Siemens statistics, 25% of Exider’s guests have been potential customers, and the average guest’s visit has lasted 87 minutes. In Europe, the Exider has been credited with gaining new customers, developing stronger relationships with existing customers and increasing brand awareness.

The U.S. goal is to board more than 15,000 carefully selected guests who make purchasing decisions as engineering constructors, contractors, consulting engineers, OEMs, government agencies and industrial and system integrators.

After Chicago, the train heads down to Atlanta (March 16-17), then, over a two-and-a-half month period, onto Washington, D.C. (March 22), New York (March 24-25), Boston (March 29-30). Detroit (April 2), Houston (April 7), Los Angeles (May 14), San Francisco (May 18) and Seattle (May 24).

Between Houston and Los Angeles the train will be on loan to Grupo Siemens S.A. de C.V. in Mexico, and after Seattle will continue north for a tour with Siemens Canada Ltd., which is based in Mississauga, Ont.

"With the Exider, we are taking the Siemens message directly to our customers and joining them on a trip through the world of modern industrial automation, drive, switching and installation technology," Dimmerling said. "It’s an ambitious ‘rolling exhibition’ that has been successful in every country it has toured. Siemens’ technology base is so broad, we even provide some of the drives used by the train’s locomotive. If we tried to feature all the technologies that Siemens makes, this train would be miles long."

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