In the technology tandem, entrepreneurs and scientists exchange ideas.
© iStock/goldmarie design

Münsterland Technology Tandems: Office Meets Lecture Hall

The Münsterland Technology Tandems promote the transfer of knowledge between business and higher education institutions in Münsterland. The special feature: An entrepreneur from Münsterland meets a scientist from the Münsterland university landscape in a relaxed atmosphere. At best, the exchange leads to lasting contacts and joint projects between companies and research institutions.

Added value for companies

  • Contacts to research and experts
  • Exclusive technology knowledge
  • Building strategic partnerships with scientific institutions
  • Marketing and PR

Added value for science

  • Contacts in the regional economy (practical needs, acquisition of third-party funding, theses)
  • Scientific cooperation with companies
  • Exchange of students and specialists
  • Student placement

Best Practice: The tandems in exchange

The technology tandems formed in Münsterland are:

Technology tandem: AuCom MCS GmbH & Co. KG from Sendenhorst and FH Münster

AuCom MCS GmbH & Co KGis the world market leader for innovative soft starter and motor control solutions. The products from the low and medium voltage range are used in a wide variety of industrial sectors: from construction, mining, oil and chemicals to water/wastewater, marine and offshore. Continuous investment in research and development as well as a keen understanding of individual customer requirements are the basis on which AuCom is steadily expanding its position as a leading system provider for modern solutions in the field of electronic drive technology. In 2014, AuCom founded the Medium Voltage Competence Centre in Germany and is now the market leader in the EMEA region in the field of medium voltage soft starters.

As part of the technology tandem, a technical exchange took place between AuCom and Münster University of Applied Sciences on the topic of innovative switchgear. The next step will be a joint student thesis on the conceptual design and construction of a medium-voltage test station for soft starters and frequency converters.

Technology tandem: Sendenhorst Adventure Distilleries and Münster University of Applied Sciences

Erlebnisbrennereien Sendenhorst is a traditional agricultural distillery and an active farm in the middle of Münsterland. The Horstmann family has been distilling since 1850 - in the fifth generation - with a lot of experience and passion. The high quality of the spirits is awarded every year by the German Agricultural Society (DLG) with medals in federal and state gold. With the transfer of the distillery to the successor generation, the company would like to open up new business fields and sales opportunities in addition to continuing the traditional business.

The tandem partner is Prof. Markus Schwering from Münster University of Applied Sciences with the teaching and research area "Technology and Innovation Management". As part of a student project in the master's degree programme in industrial engineering at the Institute for Technical Business Management, various business models for the grain distillery are being examined for feasibility and economic viability.

Technology tandem: ZBN Civil Engineering from Coesfeld and the Westphalian University of Applied Sciences

The exchange between ZBN Civil Engineering GmbH and WHS.
© Christopher Langner, Westfälische Hochschule

Among other things, ZBN Civil Engineering GmbH offers planning and expert services in industrial and commercial construction. From its headquarters in Coesfeld, the company is also active outside Germany and Europe, for example in India's Silicon Valley in Bangalore.

Heinz G. Pfankuche, director of the company, has a vision - he wants to develop systems that enable households to be completely self-sufficient from external energy suppliers. He was looking for a suitable partner to provide a scientific foundation for the conception of his idea. He found this partner in Prof. Christian Fieberg of the Westphalian University of Applied Sciences (WHS) in Gelsenkirchen.

Together, the partners will formulate a task that will be implemented by students of the WHS as part of a project or final thesis. In this way, the basic building block for the idea is created, on which further projects can build. What is particularly exciting is that this project also has an international component - because the idea of a self-sufficient household can be advanced both in Germany and in India.

Technology tandem: H. Schubert GmbH from Wettringen and Münster University of Applied Sciences

The company H . Schubert GmbH from Wettringen manufactures composite materials with design surfaces under the imi surface design label. These are used, among other things, in professional furniture and interior design, but also in outdoor areas and facades. Surface looks can be realised in concrete, rust, metal, old wood and many other designs.

After an initial discussion between the company and Stefan Adam, a first field of cooperation with Münster University of Applied Sciences was identified. Three students, under the technical supervision of Prof. Dr. Frank Striewe, have investigated in which future fields or technology areas the composite materials can potentially be applied.

This valuable input helps the company to optimise its marketing plans and to open up further fields of application for imi surface design.

Technology tandem: Spaleck GmbH & WHS Bocholt

Spaleck GmbH & Co. KG and WHS Bocholt are building on good relations and reviving their close cooperation.

Andreas Ahler, Managing Director of Spaleck GmbH & Co KG, expressed the wish to consolidate the cooperation with the Westfälische Hochschule Bocholt. At an initial meeting, it became clear that the areas of design and networked production in particular offer exciting and diverse projects that the mechanical engineering company from Bocholt would like to tackle together with the help of the WHS and its students.
At a follow-up appointment, Andreas Ahler received the representatives of WHS Bocholt Prof. Dr. Maß (Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering), Prof. Dr.-Ing. Thomas Naber (Vice Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering) and Christopher Langner (Technologiescout Enabling Networks) in the factory halls of Spaleck GmbH & Co. KG. Already during the tour of the production facilities, the topics of artificial intelligence, automated production and machine dynamics emerged as interesting fields of activity for project, bachelor's and master's theses, which Spaleck GmbH & Co KG would like to carry out in cooperation with the WHS Bocholt.

This was followed by an exchange between the representatives of WHS Bocholt and Andreas Ahler and Carsten Sühling, Managing Director of Spaleck Holding GmbH & Co. KG. They also discussed guest lectures and visits in order to enable the students of the WHS to have practical experiences within the lectures.

The rapprochement was initiated by a networking event as part of the "Enabling Networks" project of Münsterland e.V.

Technology tandem: HMT GmbH (Bocholt) & FH Münster

In search of new fields of application

HMT GmbH in Bocholt has been an established, internationally known player in the development and production of flue gas valves for decades. The company would like to use these diverse competences in the design and construction of "large" valves and container solutions in particular to expand its product range in new fields of application.

Their technology tandem partner is Prof. Dr. Markus Schwering, who teaches and researches technology and innovation management at Münster University of Applied Sciences. With Schwering's support, HMT Managing Director Achim Kettlack wants to set up a strategic technology management process together with his team, identify promising fields of application for the existing competences and identify and develop new fields of technology in order to position the company for the future.

During an initial meeting, Markus Schwering and Achim Kettlack agreed as a tandem team to hold a joint workshop: In this workshop, a systematic analysis of the innovative strengths and weaknesses is to be carried out using the Innovation Performance Radar (IPR).

Technology Tandem: Velo de Ville & FH Münster

The video call between Münster UAS and Velo de Ville.
© Stefan Adam

Ideas for future forms of mobility

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Hilmar Apmann from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Münster University of Applied Sciences was looking for partners who would like to develop ideas for future forms of mobility together with students.
Stefan Adam from TAFH Münster GmbH established contact with the company AT Zweirad GmbH. Their bicycle factory manufactures in Altenberge under the Velo de Ville brand. A common topic was quickly identified in a video call with the company. In addition to Prof. Hilmar Apmann, Professors Manfred Große-Gehling and Jochen Korn from the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Professor Carolin Schreiber from the Department of Design took part in the exchange.

Münster UAS and Velo de Ville are now working cooperatively to develop new concepts for cargo bikes. In the first phase, the future product designer Minh Phuc Pham will intensively study the users of cargo bikes in his final thesis and derive corresponding recommendations. In the further course, design students will deal with interactions between users and their cargo bike in a project called "Interactive-Future-Cargo-Bike" and students in the field of mechanical engineering will deal with constructive aspects of the actual construction.

Technology tandem: Quinting Zementol Gmbh & Münster University of Applied Sciences

Special concrete structures

Quinting Zementol GmbH is an engineering service provider from Ascheberg in the Coesfeld district. The focus of Quinting's work is on water-impermeable concrete structures, so-called "white tubs", as well as the renovation of concrete floor slabs in accordance with the Water Resources Act. Quinting Zementol supports such projects during planning, construction and execution. Dr.-Ing. Marc Bücker is Managing Director and was interested in an exchange with lecturers from the Münster University of Applied Sciences in the field of reinforced concrete construction or concrete technology.

Therefore, it was obvious that with Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dietmar Mähner, the right technology tandem partner was found from Münster University of Applied Sciences. Prof. Mähner from the Department of Civil Engineering is a perfect match for Quinting Zementol with his teaching and research areas in tunnel construction and building structures, especially in the field of water-impermeable structures. The first digital matching was initiated and accompanied by Christian Holterhues, innovation consultant at wfc Kreis Coesfeld. The next step is a visit by Dr.-Ing. Bücker to the laboratories of the Department of Civil Engineering at Münster University of Applied Sciences.

Technology tandem: Ventilatorenfabrik Oelde GmbH & Westphalian University of Applied Sciences

Additive manufacturing processes

For Ventilatorenfabrik Oelde GmbH as a metal processing company with a focus on cutting, edging and welding, it is constantly necessary to deal with new production processes. Particularly in the product area of fans, free design of the geometry opens up possibilities for improving efficiency and expanding the possible applications of the products.
Together with the Westphalian University of Applied Sciences, this technology tandem is evaluating the possibilities of additive manufacturing of dynamic fan impellers with diameters from 400 millimetres. The collaboration includes in particular:

  • Selection of suitable materials and production methods and processes
  • Evaluation of material and process on the basis of e.g. microstructure, hardness, surface quality and costs
  • Determination of optimal parameters for the impellers on the basis of microstructural, mechanical and geometrical properties.

Participants from Ventilatorenfabrik Oelde GmbH

  • Thomas Gandt, technical managing director
  • Ivo Kupka, Head of Production and Materials Management
  • Peter Homann, Head of Order Processing - Fans

Participants from the Westphalian University of Applied Sciences

  • Prof. Dr. Ghazal Moeini, Materials Technology and Joining Technology
  • Prof. Dr. Peter Graß, Production Processes and Metrology, Process Cost Calculation
  • Prof. Dr. Deniz Kurumlu, Materials Science and Testing
  • Dr Gabriela Marginean, Junior Research Group and Graduate Centre

More about Technology Scouting Münsterland

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