Fraunhofer IPA – one of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft’s largest institutes – was founded in 1959 and employs almost 1000 workers. Our future and lead topics include the biointelligent value chain, digital transformation in the context of Industrie 4.0, energy storage systems, frugal manufacturing systems, artificial intelligence in automation, lightweight engineering and resource efficiency.
The focus of research and development work at Fraunhofer IPA is on organizational and technological issues related to the manufacturing industry. We develop, test and implement methods, components and devices right up to complete machines and production lines. Fraunhofer IPA’s 15 specialist departments cover the entire field of manufacturing engineering. They are coordinated by six business units and work on an interdisciplinary basis with industrial enterprises from the following sectors: automotive, machinery & equipment, electronics & microsystems, energy, medical engineering & biotechnology and the process industry.
Future is our product: sustainable, personalized and smart
Our research and development work is geared towards the cost-effective manufacture of sustainable and personalized products. This is based on two strategic cornerstones: mass sustainability, which aims at minimizing the consumption of resources while maximizing the standard of living, and mass personalization, with which we hope to combine the cost advantages of mass production (economies of scale) with those associated with flexibilization (economies of scope). Our goal is to enable individualized products in lot sizes of 1 to be manufactured at the same price as mass-produced goods.
S-TEC networks companies with research and politics
S-TEC was co-founded by Fraunhofer, the University of Stuttgart and the state government of Baden-Württemberg with a view to advancing future-oriented research topics and bringing them quickly to the market. Lighthouse research, industry-on-campus projects and start-ups, as well as training courses and further education programs take place on the campus. S-TEC networks companies with Stuttgart’s highly-diverse research landscape.
From digital to biological transformation
What comes next after digitizing the value chain? Already today, Fraunhofer IPA is assuming a key role in the development of biointelligent value-adding systems. In the future, biological transformation will merge nature with technology, i.e. the biosphere and technosphere. Optimized during a period of evolution lasting more than three and a half billion years, principles, processes and organisms are increasingly finding their way into the industrial value chain. Thanks to innovations in bioengineering and information technology, these can now be cultivated and integrated into numerous industrial processes. This makes the value chain more effective, more efficient and more sustainable - for the benefit of man and, in particular, of the environment.