The last few years have seen an enormous increase in the importance of mechatronics for developing and realising innovative products, machines, plants and automated production systems. Mechatronics has become one of the most important economic sectors in Austria. Developments in mechatronics are shaped by the ever-growing importance of both intelligent technical systems and computer simulation in the product development process. Drivers of innovation are also new materials and production technologies. These development trends are thus reflected in the following R&D focus areas:
Cooperation is currently underway with multiple European research institutions (CERN, ACT Research, ACMIT, AIT, AAC), universities (Vienna University of Technology, University of Nottingham, Bratislava University of Technology) and industrial companies such as Magna, Great Wall Motors, Infineon, AMS, ZKW, RUAG, Plasmo, MedAustron and Oregano Systems.
The FTI lead project funded by the province of Lower Austria aims to develop mobile, situationally embedded data visualisation methods to integrate the physical environment and abstract data representation. This is intended to realize basic technologies for the vision of a sensor-based data economy in Lower Austria, leading to Smart Rural Areas, a networked future of rural areas.
The goal of project ICAS is the integration of ultra cold atom based sensor principles on the CMOS platform. Modern techniques in atomic physics allow to cool down atomic ensembles close to absolute zero temperature (e.g. down to a few 10 nano Kelvin). These so called "ultra-cold atoms" are an extremely suitable candidate for the realisation of highly sensitive quantum based sensing devices., as their beheauviour is susceptibel to external influence such as gravity or magneitc fields. Within the Project ICAS we try together with partners at the University of Nottingham to integrate cold atoms on a CMOS compatible platform, which is the first step towards mass production of these sensor systems.
The aim of this project, funded by the EU within the frame of H2020, is to develop a recycling supply chain for rare earth magnets in the EU and to demonstrate this on a pilot scale with new products in different fields of application. The task of FOTEC is to design the injection moulds for the magnetic NdFeB components for the MIM process.
The project, funded by the Province of Lower Austria, aims to combine the complementary additive, 3-dimensional production processes of laser beam melting and laser powder deposition welding to form a novel production process. In addition to the additive manufacturing of metallic demonstrators, FOTEC is also responsible for the realization of a digital twin.
The aim of this FFG-funded project is to implement a modular robot construction kit system that can be used by experts during programming and by non-specially trained personnel during operation. In order to demonstrate the universal applicability, the project results will be demonstrated in several very different application-oriented scenarios.
Hard- and Software-Update of 2 test Benches for the electrical test of tractor cabs. New tests need supply voltages of 80V and 120V.
The aim of this ESA project is to determine suitable methods for the production of components from so-called metallic glasses for space applications. FOTEC develops welding parameters for laser beam melting for the additive manufacturing of demonstrators.
The EIT project aims to establish a training programme in additive manufacturing aimed at operators, specialists, engineers, managers and new professionals to address the current shortage of specialists able to use additive manufacturing across the entire value chain.
In the frame of this project funded by the Province of Lower Austria, a sensor network is being set up for roller mills to record the current condition of the plant. Based on forecasts, the plant operator can derive predictive maintenance measures for cost-optimized and efficient maintenance.
In this FFG-supported project, upgrade potential for the Indium Field Emission Electric Propulsion (FEEP) thruster developed by FOTEC and commercialised by ENPULSION will be investigated. A significant increase in power density necessitates development of modified electronics and thermal management solutions. Possibilities of manufacturing heat pipes with an additive manufacturing process will be investigated.
The objective of the FFG project is the development of complex heat exchangers and mirror structures. The heat exchangers should show a higher power density and the adaptation of the outer contour to the surrounding system. The task of FOTEC is the simulation of the flow in the heat exchangers by means of CFD simulation as well as additive manufacturing of individual demonstrators.
Development of a force-plate for swimming
The aim of this FFG project is to develop a real quality assurance during the building process for laser beam melting (3D printing) of metals by a combined photodiode- and camera-based melt pool monitoring for the first time. The task of FOTEC is to create an error catalog and to develop evaluation algorithms based on it.
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