By taking nature as a role model, scientists develop ideas and products that can be specifically adapted to environmental conditions. This method allows us to specifically influence the behavior of mechanical structures: reducing the weight, increasing the stiffness or actively controlling the shape. Using the right design methodology in early stages of the development process makes it possible to provide great progress in terms of product quality.

Project examples of the research topic Engineering

© Fraunhofer IFF

Additive Manufacturing Process Step Simulation Concomitant to Development

The software tool VINCENT for planning motion and simulating robots in additive manufacturing of large parts is being developed in an ongoing project

© Fraunhofer IPK

Product development

Simulation and additive manufacturing of lightweight structures in turbine components

Setup of an additive process chain consisting of selective laser melting (SLM) and laser metal deposition (LMD)

© Fraunhofer IWU

Miniature Heat Exchanger

This counterflow water/water miniature heat exchanger was designed for and manufactured by Laser Beam Melting in order to demonstrate achievable efficiency compared to conventional plate heat exchangers

© Fraunhofer IWM

Design for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM)

Bionic Manufacturing

In the completed project »Bionic manufacturing« (01RB0906A) scientists from Fraunhofer IWM developed software that creates lightweight constructions by microstructuring bulk designs.

© Fraunhofer IPK

Build-up strategies for a constant material deposition

Additive manufacturing with LMD allows the production of near net-shaped parts. However any slight irregularity in one layer can add up with time and result in component deviations.

© Fraunhofer IWU

Functionally Integrated Implant – MUGETO ®

This component is a prototype of a hip stem endoprosthesis, which shows the potential of additive manufacturing for medical applications, demonstrating the feasibility to integrate different functions in one part

© Fraunhofer IGCV

Mesoscopic lightweight design using honeycombs

Design of lattice and honeycomb structures for additive manufacturing under the bionic approach of force-optimized adaptation

© Fraunhofer IWM

Design for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM)

Optimal layout of an artificial vascular system

The supply of biological tissue with nutrients by an artificial vascular system is a current challenge for Tissue Engineering. At the Fraunhofer IWM the optimal layout of an additively manufactured vascular system was investigated.

© Fraunhofer IWU


As part of the "HiperFormTool“ project, it was investigated how the cycle time during press hardening can be significantly reduced by additively manufactured, active tool components. The thermal behavior of the tools and the forming process were simulated for different conformal cooling geometries.

© Fraunhofer IGCV

Optimization of a reamer

The layered construction in additive manufacturing allows new degrees of freedom in the construction of components and thereby expands the available solution space.

© Fraunhofer IWM

Optimal layout for functionally graded materials

An increasing number of additive manufacturing processes allows the user to design locally different material parameters. This may be achieved by using different process parameters or by combining different materials.

© Fraunhofer IFAM

Additive Manufacturing of lightweight components

The work packages of Fraunhofer IFAM comprise the areas of powder, construction and component manufacturing

© Fraunhofer EMI

Additive Design Guidelines

A metallic structural component of an aircraft cargo door is optimized with regards to lightweight construction. Design and process based guidelines are developed for an effective product development of the Additive Manufacturing of this component.

© Fraunhofer EMI

approaches for the development of small satellites

The application of Additive Design and Manufacturing, including the structural optimization for start- and mission loads aiming for lightweight constructions, allows for new possibilities in the development of small satellites and their payloads.