In the area of mechanical engineering, production technologies is a field with a long tradition at TUM, with numerous research partners in science and industry. TUM and Fraunhofer (FhG) are consolidating their expertise in the fields of casting, composite materials and intelligent automation at the new facility. Their interdisciplinary partnership will jointly explore future-oriented developments in the automotive engineering, aircraft construction, mechanical engineering and plant engineering industries.
A primary focus here is the provision of innovative concepts for lightweight construction, the determining factor for technological progress in a large number of engineering sectors, specifically in the automotive engineering and aerospace branches.
The defined goal of the IGCV is consolidation of research and development in the fields of lightweight casting technologies, fiber-reinforced composite materials and automated production and generation of scientifically based innovations for German industry. In addition, interdisciplinary research is to be promoted in the German core industries automotive engineering, aircraft construction, mechanical engineering and plant engineering.
Construction of new research facility at TUM Campus in Garching
The new facility will integrate the Industry 4.0 expertise of the Fraunhofer "Resource Efficient Mechatronic Processing Machines (RMV)" project group, headed by Prof. Gunther Reinhart, with the composites expertise of the Fraunhofer ICT department "Functionally Integrated Lightweight Construction FIL", under the direction of Prof. Klaus Drechsler. Led by Prof. Wolfram Volk, the casting technologies group of the Chair of Metal Forming and Casting will also help define new joint FhG/TUM focus areas.
The Augsburg headquarters will be home to executive management, administration and the IGCV research fields Automation, Processing and Composites. A new department for casting technologies will be established at the Garching site, in addition to a new FhG research facility being erected on the TUM campus in Garching. In the medium-term time frame, the new facility will develop into a Fraunhofer Institute.
Prof. Gunther Reinhart, Prof. Klaus Drechsler and Prof. Wolfram Volk will jointly head the IGCV, with the post of institute director alternating on a rotating basis. Prof. Reinhart will begin in this role.
"TUM and Fraunhofer have worked together closely and successfully for many years," says Prof. Thomas Hofmann, TUM vice-president of Research and Innovation. "Our partnership ranges from security in information technologies to the chemistry of biogenic raw materials, all the way to building physics, silicon technologies and intelligent food packaging technologies. In order to develop innovative lightweight structures we are now consolidating our expertise in materials and production, where TUM has been the leading competence center for years. Together we have established new standards in science and industrial applications." Hofmann went on to emphasize that the new facility will add a technological touch that is possible only with this particular combination.
The Bavarian State Ministry of Economic Affairs and Media, Energy and Technology is supporting the IGCV and the new construction in Augsburg and Garching.