The Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) announced the Negotiation Automation Platform Testbed, led by IIC member NEC Corp., with support from IIC members Kabuku, Fraunhofer IOSB and Korea Electronics Technology Institute (KETI).
The IIC Negotiation Automation Platform Testbed uses a variety of AI infrastructure technologies, which automatically negotiate with each other, in order to find mutually agreeable contract terms. In the future, the testbed aims to promote standardization activities that support the growth of AI throughout society.
This testbed enables flexible automated negotiation of detailed trading conditions and business counterpart matching across manufacturing supply chains, by employing new AI-based negotiation technologies and real-time production and logistics data.
In a manufacturing use case, automatic negotiation on conditions of trading products benefits both buyers and sellers. It enables buyers to satisfy their needs through flexibly expressing their procurement requirements, and enables sellers to expand opportunities for orders and profits by making full use of assets.
In a logistics use case, automatic negotiation enables on-demand shared transport services which helps factories to minimize their transport systems in the current business situation where dedicated logistics costs are high and redundant traffic increases the total vehicle traffic.
Negotiation Automation Platform (NAP) has the three-tier structure of Edge Tier, Platform Tier and Enterprise Tier as in the Industrial Internet Reference Architecture (IIRA). Negotiation agents are in the enterprise tier and they need information on planning of production or transportation in the platform tier. In the edge tier they need IoT information such as line performance/healthiness, stock volume, truck position, and vacant space.
Each company that makes or receives an order is provided with a negotiation AI agent through the IIC Negotiation Automation Platform. The AI agent searches for terms and conditions that can be agreed upon by both parties by using standardized protocols, data formats and lexical definitions. If both parties agree, it will be understood to be contracted automatically. Even if agreed, the final contract will be carried out by human users.
The IIC Negotiation Automation Platform makes it easier for both parties to a find win-win condition and helps to make the manufacturing and logistics value chain efficient and flexible. Other participants on the IIC Negotiation Automation Platform Testbed team include Oki Electric Industry, Toyota Tsusho Corporation, and the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST).
“In a manufacturing use case, automatic negotiation on conditions for the trading of products benefits both buyers and sellers,” said IIC Testbed Lead Dr. Satoshi Morinaga, Research Fellow, NEC. “It enables buyers to be flexible with their demands by expressing their procurement requirements within a range and sellers can expand opportunities for orders and profits by making full use of their assets.”
“In a logistics use case, automatic negotiation can facilitate on-demand shared transport services. This can help factories minimize their transport systems in situations when logistics costs are high and redundant traffic will increase the total vehicle traffic,” continued Dr. Morinaga.