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  • Medical engineering / 2023

    Bioresorbable membrane for healing internal and external wounds

    Research News / February 01, 2023

    Elektroversponnene Renacer®- Membran (5 x 5cm)
    © Fraunhofer ISC

    Fraunhofer researchers have succeeded in using the bioresorbable silica gel Renacer® to produce an electrospun membrane that is neither cytotoxic to cells nor genotoxic. This model mimics fibrous structures found in connective tissue and is therefore particularly suitable for regenerative applications, such as for improved wound healing.

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  • Uninterrupted data transmission for pilotless aerial vehicles / 2023

    Piloting drones reliably with mobile communication technology

    Research News / February 01, 2023

    Wingcopter in Malawi
    © Falco Seliger

    Drones are operating increasingly in areas out of sight of the person controlling them. However, conventional remote controls have a limited range, which makes them unsuitable for these flights. On the other hand, simple mobile network-based systems have so far been unable to guarantee a reliable connection when mobile network loads are high or where there is a lack of network coverage. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications, Heinrich-Hertz-Institut, HHI have joined forces with partners in the SUCOM project to develop a new mobile network system that can be used to control drones even over long distances and over difficult terrain.

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  • Economy meets ecology / 2023

    Energy-efficient neighborhood redevelopment for affordable housing

    Research News / February 01, 2023

    Im Verbundprojekt smoodACT wurde ein Gebäude- und Quartiers-Energiemanagementsystem konzipiert, entwickelt und getestet.
    © Fraunhofer IOSB-AST

    In the “smood® — smart neighborhood” project, sixteen companies, four research institutions and an association have been working together, with the scientific support of Fraunhofer, on the future of energy-related renovation measures over the past few years. Covering everything from digitalized planning processes and innovative district storage systems for electricity and heat to intelligent control and operational management solutions, the project aims to ensure that existing district facilities are ready for the energy transition — and that tenants benefit from lower costs of living as a result.

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  • BMBF innovation cluster INTAKT / 2023

    A new generation of microimplants

    Research News / February 01, 2023

    Eine koordinierte Stimulation der Mikroimplantate unterstützt bei der Ausführung von Handbewegungen.
    © WILDDESIGN GmbH, Gelsenkirchen

    They are barely the size of a thumbnail, able to communicate with each other and respond to each other, and designed to make life easier for people with functional limitations. We are talking about a new generation of interactive microimplants developed by the innovation cluster INTAKT, which is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and coordinated by the Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering IBMT. These miniature assistants can act as a stimulus in cases of tinnitus or digestive tract disorders or help a person’s hand to regain the ability to grip.

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  • Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence Programmable Materials CPM / 2023

    Changing shapes at the push of a button

    Research News / January 02, 2023

    Oben: Die Steifigkeit und Formänderung kann durch die Strukturierung einer Folie lokal eingestellt werden. Unten: Die Stapelung verschieden hoher Folien erlaubt die Erzeugung eines programmierbaren Materials.
    © Fraunhofer ICT

    Programmable materials are true shapeshifters. They can change their characteristics in a controlled and reversible way with the push of a button, independently adapting to fit new conditions. They can be used, for example, to make comfy chairs or mattresses that prevent bedsores. To produce these, the support is formed in such a way that the contact surface is large which, as a result, lowers the pressure on parts of the body. This type of programmable material is being developed by researchers at the Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence Programmable Materials CPM, who plan to bring it to the market with the help of industry partners. One of their goals is to reduce the use of resources.

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  • Energy transition / 2023

    Software for automated connection checking and cross-sector energy network planning

    Research News / January 02, 2023

    Digitaler Zwilling eines Stromnetzes in retoflow
    © retoflow GmbH

    The energy market is undergoing a major shift, with renewable energies booming and the number of connection requests rising sharply due to funding programs for solar plants, heat pumps and electric vehicle charging stations. The new cloud software retoflow offers energy network operators an automated and efficient way to check these requests, model and simulate power grids and pipeline networks across sectors, and engage in long-term planning. This user-friendly program has been developed by the startup retoflow GmbH, a spin-off of the Fraunhofer Institute for Energy Economics and Energy System Technology IEE.

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  • Using Fraunhofer technology to plan the factories of tomorrow / 2023

    Working interactively with mixed-reality factory layouts

    Research News / January 02, 2023

    Layoutplanung mit HoloLayouts im Miniaturmodus
    © Fraunhofer IPA/Rainer Bez

    The factories of the future have significant demands to meet – including the ability to adapt to production processes quickly and function within tight spaces that come at a high operating cost. Mixed reality can provide efficient support for factory planning in exactly this kind of scenario. Through their HoloLayouts software, researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA have developed an application in which multiple people can collaborate interactively on creating factory layouts that use space efficiently. The factory planning process can be experienced in a virtual environment, with changes made live and in real time.

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  • Swapping recycling for a circular economy / 2023

    A second chance for batteries, gearboxes and cog-wheels

    Research News / January 02, 2023

    EKODA’s circular economy strategy is intended to disrupt the single-minded fixation on recycling. It uses an evaluation system to check the suitability of components for reuse or repurposing.
    © Fraunhofer IWU

    Used and damaged cars are often disposed of via energy-intensive scrapping processes — even when many of their parts are still fully functional. In the EKODA project, Fraunhofer researchers are developing a better alternative: First, they examine each component in a complex testing procedure. Then they use an evaluation system to generate recommendations for how these components could be reused. This strategy optimizes the lifespan of the individual parts, making it possible to establish a sustainable circular economy in the mobility sector. Used batteries, gear shafts and cogwheels could even show up in other applications outside the automotive industry.

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  • Safety in warehouse logistics / 2022

    New Fraunhofer safety technology reduces transportation accidents

    Research News / December 03, 2022

    © Daniel Viol/Fraunhofer IWS

    Warehouses are home to heavy volumes of traffic. The numbers of industrial trucks (pallet trucks, forklift vehicles and the like) traversing their aisles are growing especially large – in facilities that are themselves increasing in size all the time. Under these conditions, accidents become an inevitability even if numerous safety measures are put in place. Now, optical sensors on industrial trucks might provide warehouse staff with better protection as they do their jobs. Joining forces with BASF and Kinotex Sensor GmbH, the Fraunhofer Application Center for Optical Metrology and Surface Technologies AZOM has developed prototypes designed to ensure added safety during day-to-day activities.

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  • Precise therapeutics testing — preventing animal testing / 2022

    Designer immune cells for drug discovery, potency and safety testing

    Research News / December 01, 2022

    To prevent testing on animals and create even more precise ways of testing therapeutics, the pharmaceutical industry is increasingly turning to human immune cells. However, the availability of cells like these has been limited to date. Now, Fraunhofer researchers have succeeded in scaling the production of customized immune cells from laboratory up to industrial level.

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Articles, conference contributions, research reports, studies, patents or utility models: Fraunhofer-Publica documents the publications and patents that result from the research activities of the Fraunhofer institutes.