Innovations for Resource-Efficient Production
In view of climate change and the increasing scarcity and rising prices of natural resources, improving resource efficiency is becoming an increasingly significant factor in production processes, among other areas. Companies working in the fields of manufacturing technology and process engineering and their production suppliers need to react to this trend.
There are a wide range of opportunities and approaches for energy- and materials-efficient production in all stages of a product's life cycle. In order to maintain and enhance the competitiveness and technological leadership of German industry, we need to encourage the development of innovative energy- and material-efficient solutions that take the entire production process chain and the complete product life cycle into account. The energy savings potential is estimated at up to 30 per cent.
Companies operating in the fields of manufacturing technology and process engineering need to be better equipped to improve the energy efficiency of their production processes while at the same time developing, producing and using innovative and internationally marketable products. Further research is needed to develop energy-efficient production and process engineering as well as the mechanical and plant engineering they require.
Research is also needed to support production companies in their efforts to make targeted use of production-related product properties in order to manufacture innovative products with customized and complex functionalities and guarantee their operational reliability during their entire life cycles. Component surfaces are one of the areas that these activities focus on. Preliminary studies were carried out to analyse the specific research and development needs. Subsequently, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) announced a competition for project ideas in the following priority fields within the area of production systems and technologies.
- Energy efficiency in manufacturing technology
- Energy efficiency in process engineering
- Energy-efficient machines, plants and components
- Production-related product properties
- Functional surfaces
The research projects that are to be initiated as part of the competition's call for proposals should have the aim of securing the world market leadership of German industry in the development, production and operation of machines, plants and components for production as well as in the supply and use of modern manufacturing technology and process engineering. In doing so, they should make a significant contribution to improving resource efficiency, especially energy and material efficiency. The aim is to help Germany remain a market leader in the field of innovative technologies and equipment.
- Energy-efficient processes and technologies in the fields of manufacturing technology and process engineering
- Energy-efficient production equipment
- Targeted use of manufacturing technologies to create certain product properties, also taking into account resource efficiency, both in products and processes
- Components with local functional surfaces, produced in a resource-efficient way