Developing now for manufacturing tomorrow

One of the main pillars supporting employment, economic well-being and social stability is based on the ability to gain and maintain a clear lead via product and process innovations. Now, more than ever before, it is vital to overcome existing technological limitations, to develop adaptable and connected processes, production systems and forms of organization and to implement these in practice.

But what do current trends mean for the people employed in the manufacturing environment today? And what new developments herald particularly promising advances in the coming years?

The following provides an overview of our work on trends in production engineering, which lies at the heart of our activities here at the Fraunhofer IPT – so that we can find just the right production solution for you; not only in the form of individual technologies but embedded in the process chains and production systems of tomorrow.

Future Powertrain

The market for electric cars is growing - not only in Europe, but worldwide. As the number of electric vehicles continues to grow in the coming years, so will the demand for batteries and the cells they contain: It is estimated that by 2030 there will be a need for more than ten times this amount.

At the Fraunhofer IPT, we are therefore now bundling production technologies to manufacture a wide variety of components and parts for the electric powertrain - from classic lithium-ion batteries through supercapacitors and flywheel accumulators to fuel cells. 

Biological Transformation

For the Fraunhofer IPT, biological transformation means systematically applying knowledge about biological processes to optimize production – in the sense of sustainable industrial value creation. In the cooperation of life sciences, material sciences, production sciences, IT and other research areas, we at the Fraunhofer IPT are working on integrating the findings of the various disciplines into manufacturing and other important economic sectors.  

Industrie 4.0 – Networked, adaptive production

What has come to be known as the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” is being shaped predominantly by production digitization and networking. Much of this remains a vision – for the time being. However companies with the will to succeed in the fiercely competitive global markets need to consider today the role they wish to play in “Industrie 4.0” tomorrow.

Additive Manufacturing

© Fraunhofer IPT

Additive Manufacturing – also commonly known as 3D printing – is wielding increasingly strong influence on business processes. As one of the key technologies of digitalized production, which forms part of the Industrie 4.0 initiative, Additive Manufacturing will have an impact on existing supply chains and generate new business models.