The Hannover Fair, one of the world’s largest industrial exhibitions, returns to Germany, April 4 to 8. This year’s show features 13 concurrent trade fairs covering fluid power, mechanical and electrical drives, industrial automation, subcontracting, and energy technology. And they will fill all of Hannover’s 24 halls and exhibition grounds.

Visitors can expect a vibrant event, says Wolfram von Fritsch, chairman of the Management Board of Deutsche Messe. One reason is that global industry is in the midst of an economic recovery. According to the Frankfurt-based German Engineering Federation (VDMA), the global mechanical-engineering industry will grow by 8% this year, while the German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers’ Assn. (ZVEI) anticipates 6% growth worldwide for its markets.

In addition, says von Fritsch, many industrial companies have taken advantage of the recent economic downturn to develop new products that address customer demands for more efficiency, lower costs, and better reliability. He anticipates more than 4,500 new components, systems, and services will be unveiled at Hannover, “demonstrating that highly-intelligent solutions for the global challenges of the future are available today.”

With improving business, however, comes higher energy prices. To counter that trend, “Smart Efficiency” is the overriding theme encompassing all the Hannover shows.

“Efficiency within industrial sectors has been a predominant topic for years,” states von Fritsch. But designing industrial processes requires more than just efficient components. It takes intelligent connections and interactions among all the parts to maximize efficiency. This year, Hannover will emphasize this approach to cut costs, reduce weight, extend life, optimize efficiency, and conserve resources at every stage of the production chain, he says.

A major draw will be the biennial Motion, Drive & Automation show, which focuses on power transmission and control. It showcases the complete spectrum of electrical and mechanical power transmission and control technologies as well as all the latest offerings in hydraulics and pneumatics. In addition to the focus on energy efficiency, condition monitoring that ensures machines are up and running at peak levels will also be featured. Of the more than 1,300 manufacturers at MD&A, two-thirds will be from outside Germany — mainly from other European countries, China, Turkey, and the U. S.

Motion control and power transmission will also play a prominent role at the Industrial Automation and MobiliTec fairs. Industrial Automation centers on process and factory automation, and features controls, sensors, automation-related IT and communication hardware and software, and robots. MobiliTec focuses on hybrid and electric powertrains and mobile energy storage. It brings together energy companies, systems and component suppliers for electromobility applications, and manufacturers of hybrid and mobile drives.

Others fairs under the Hannover umbrella cover wind and renewable energy, compressed air and vacuum technology, surface coatings, nanotechnology, research and technology transfer, and subcontractors from around the world. Find more information at www.hannovermesse.de/en.

© 2011 Penton Media, Inc.