The Federal Ministry of Education and Research, BMBF for short, is supporting the formation of a RWTH working group, which is investigating the interaction between social and technical innovations. The project is under the direction of Dr. Yves-Simon Gloy from the Institut für Textiltechnik (ITA) and will receive 2.5 million Euros over five years.
Multiple machines rattle in one of the halls at the Institut für Textiltechnik or ITA. Many technical details and processes are tested on the machines, including the controls. Dr.-Ing. Yves-Simon Gloy demonstrates the operation that was current till now on a machine. A number of buttons must be pressed to attain the desired perameters.
"It's now simpler and better," says Gloy, who then shows another machine with two students standing next to a small operator tablet. The menu consists of comprehensive and easily understood symbols, making it no longer necessary for workers to select the parameters themselves for the weaving process. An assistance system prescribes the optimal settings suitable for the material and machine. They are then confirmed simply with the press of a button.
Intelligent systems and increasing automation are leading to changes for employees in many fields within the textile industry. Under Gloy's project leadership a working group is investigating the interaction between social and technical innovations.
The department director at ITA and adjunct professor at Clemson University in South Carolina has found success with his concept in a funding competition held by the Federal Ministry of Research. Over the next five years a research group on the topic "Socio-Technical Systems in the Textile Industry" will be funded with 2.5 million Euros.
Technology Does Not Exclude People
Using implementation demonstrators, the use of existing solutions will be tested within the framework of Industry 4.0 in textile industry through interdisciplinary collaboration wiith industry and research partners. One goal is to enable more easier operation for an aging workforce. This doesn't just apply to the generation that grew up with analog machine systems, but rather all age groups, emphasizes Jacqueline Lemm. She works as a sociologist and academic staff member in the project.
"The average age of the workforce in the textile machine sector is over 50 and thus much higher than in other sectors. However there is also a large percentage of contract workers and migrants, who have to overcome language barriers."
Workplaces with assistance systems can take individual skills into consideration and every person can be put in a position where they are able to find their way around more complex content. Lemm knows critics' arguments: "Many fear that the increasing automatization of production processes will wipe out jobs. We want to show that technology does not exclude people."
The research association wants to initiate production processes as socio-technical systems with people at the focus with their needs and skills. This includes handicap accessibility and that machines are not dependent on their location. According to the Aachen researchers, adapting text size, pictograms, or the inclusion of photos and videos that explain the work steps are all sensible details.
"We've already received a lot of positive feedback from the textile machine manufacturers," reports Gloy. That's also founded in the competitive pressure of the industry, which only remains competitive internationaly through innovations. With approximately 65,000 employees, the textile industry is an important employer in Germany. As a result, the researchers in Aachen are using the contact with industry to test the suitability for everyday use of the systems they develop.
Sebastian Dreher | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Scientists from Hannover develop a novel lightweight production process
27.09.2017 | IPH - Institut für Integrierte Produktion Hannover gGmbH
PRESTO – Highly Dynamic Powerhouses
15.05.2017 | JULABO GmbH
Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.
To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...
The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...
With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong
Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...
An interdisciplinary group of researchers interfaced individual bacteria with a computer to build a hybrid bio-digital circuit - Study published in Nature Communications
Scientists at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) have managed to control the behavior of individual bacteria by connecting them to a...
Physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (run jointly by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics) have developed an attosecond electron microscope that allows them to visualize the dispersion of light in time and space, and observe the motions of electrons in atoms.
The most basic of all physical interactions in nature is that between light and matter. This interaction takes place in attosecond times (i.e. billionths of a...
08.12.2017 | Event News
07.12.2017 | Event News
05.12.2017 | Event News
11.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
11.12.2017 | Materials Sciences
11.12.2017 | Earth Sciences