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Vehicle and production of the future from Daimler AG and University of Stuttgart

ARENA2036 research, project taking place on the campus of the University of Stuttgart features minds from business and science come together to merge together flexible production and integration of lightweight materials while developing vehicles. The contract will allow candidates and researchers from Institute for Aircraft Design and Daimler come together to figure out usage of lightweight materials in production, design and simulation.

Lightweight materials have been explored for a while now. There are many auto brands that are making use of lightweight components to develop vehicles and improve efficiency. The main idea is to make use of fiber reinforced plastic (FRP) and carbon reinforced plastic (CRP) in series productions vehicles in a way that will translate into a reasonable selling price for prospective customers.

The contract will allow Daimler and Institute for Aircraft design to find logical ways to initiate cost effective procedures that will come with large scale production of these technologies. Mercedes Benz is looking to reduce the weight of all of its models by 10% in the near future so as to improve fuel efficiency and reduce amount of emissions.

Professor Herbert Kohler, Vice President Group Research and Sustainability; Chief Environmental Officer Daimler AG siad, “An intelligent material mix and lightweight construction have been an integral part of Mercedes-Benz vehicle construction for decades. In addition to high-strength steels we also use other materials in order to reduce the weight of our vehicles and thus further enhance efficiency. We are confident about the intelligent use of FRP/CRP components – always in accordance with the principle “the right material in the right place”. The challenge is to use FRP and also CRP in the series-production vehicle in such an economically efficient manner that the overall costs remain attractive for the customers. We are addressing this together within the framework of our cooperation.”
Professor Peter Middendorf, Head of the Institute for Aircraft Design at the University of Stuttgart, had this to say, “At the Institute for Aircraft Design we have been developing fibre-reinforced lightweight construction structures for aviation for many years now. Our research focuses on preform technology/liquid composite moulding and the virtual representation of the entire process chain, offering high transfer potential for the automotive industry. Together with Daimler, in the future we primarily want to investigate faster and more cost-effective procedures in order to meet the challenges of large-scale production with new technologies.”

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