3D printing, scanning, laser cutting tand more – digital manufacturing technologies are widely considered to be a prelude to the next industrial revolution. To prepare students for the future of manufacturing and cement these technologies as integral parts of the region, three Lower Rhine universities – Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences, Ruhr-West University of Applied Sciences and RWTH Aachen University – have joined together in an ambitious project based on the ‘FabLab’, a pioneering concept developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that is rapidly taking hold around the world. The project partners have also begun development of a Centre of Excellence for 3D Manufacturing Technologies, or 3D-Kompetenzzentrum Niederrhein, to effectively coordinate the production opportunities and capabilities of the participating FabLabs.
‘Digital Fabrication’ is well on its way to revolutionising our world and the global economy. But what about here in the Lower Rhine? Our “zdi-FabLab @ school” project is focused on just that, namely making new fabrication technologies like 3D printing, 3D scanning or laser cutting available in our region. To that end, the Faculty of Communication and Environment at Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences and its zdi Centre Kamp-Lintfort have adapted a globally-connected concept that was originally developed by the Massachusetts Insitute of Technology (MIT): the FabLab.
Life in villages and rural areas in Germany is becoming more and more difficult: stores are closing down, bus services are being scaled back, and bars and restaurants are slowly disappearing. An expert team of researchers at Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences wants to fight back: In “Smart Villages”, researchers collaborate with residents of the local village Grieth to develop sustainable and future-oriented solutions for Germany.
The High Tech Greenhouse 2020 is a prototype concept for an innovative and sustainable horticultural system for the future. Initiated by the German industrial bank LIOF and the international garden festival and exhibition Floriade, the project combines innovative solutions in climate technology, energy, light, substrates and water to produce an integrated, ultra-modern greenhouse cultivation system.
In this joint German-Dutch research and development project, new UAV-based infrared and radar remote sensing technologies are being developed for a variety of applications, including agricultural monitoring, traffic monitoring, technical inspections of industrial complexes, flood prevention and non-intrusive monitoring of nature perserves and animal populations.
The goal of ‘Mobile - Mobil im Leben’ is to ensure that people with cognitive and physical disabilities are able to easily and effectively participate in public transportation through a user-friendly, smartphone-based navigation system.
PIKSL, a project of In der Gemeinde leben gGmbH (‘Living in the Community’), aims at further developing and improving access to modern information and communication technology for people with cognitive disabilities. Researchers hope to increase make it easier for people with disabilities to participate more in society by giving them more autonomy and helping them be less reliant on professional care. PIKSL represents a tangible effort to implement the goals and ideas laid out in the UN’s Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
In this project, Prof. Dr. Nele Wild-Wall investigates the potential impact of demographic shifts on the future workplace. Over the course of one’s life, cognitive processes go through numerous changes and can begin to deteriorate in later years. This is why it’s essential to develop work environments and facilities that are adapted to a wide range of physical and cognitive requirements and conditions. Only then will it be possible to effectively compensate for age-related deficiencies and achieve an optimal level of performance and motivation in the workplace.