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16: Stay Innovative – the Example of Light Weight Design

Breakout / Working Group
english language

Central Europe’s strengths in the manufacture of lightweight design gives it a competitive advantage over other rapidly-growing regions. Nevertheless, to remain successful in the future, it will need to increase its innovative capacity. How might Austria profit yet more from the innovative potential of lightweight design?


Vice President, Upper Austria Economic Chamber, Linz Introduction
Deputy Governor, State of Upper Austria, Linz Introduction
Managing Director, Affan Innovative Structures LLC, Dubai
Managing Director, Berylls Strategy Advisors GmbH, Munich Abstract
(1) Vehicle weight, i.e. lightweight solutions, is the second most important lever for achieving CO2 targets ranking just behind the optimization of the powertrain. This means that lightweight design solutions are essential for meeting CO2 targets especially given the CO2 fleet target of 95 g CO2/km defined for 2020 in Europe.
(2) In the future, lightweight design will go hand in hand with the further electrification of the powertrain. In hybrid and, in particular, battery electric vehicles, lightweight design is needed to offset the additional weight of electric drive systems it helps to extend the range that can be driven on electrical power alone.
(3) The growing penetration of driver assistant systems and comfort equipment in smaller vehicle segments will continue to drive the weight spiral in the future. For these reasons, lightweight design will not remain the prerogative of high-end applications or the premium vehicle segment. On the contrary, in the future, modern lightweight design solutions will also be widely used in the volume segment. In the race to realize affordable lightweight design for high volumes, competition among materials and concepts is quickly becoming more intense. Lightweight materials also offer new opportunities for design, vehicle concept, and vehicle architecture.
Even if the strong growth in Europe persists, vehicles produced in China both by international and Chinese OEMs will account for almost 30 percent of lightweight body design growth by 2025, for example. Then, China will almost have caught up with the European lightweight design market in 12 years. The NAFTA region is also becoming increasingly important, because American OEMs, with their relatively large and heavy vehicle fleets, need to make up ground in lightweight design. In addition, European transplants in the U.S., Mexico, and Brazil generate demand for manufacturing lightweight locally.
The coming years will be marked by a large variety of solutions. The growing number of lightweight materials and concepts will put the squeeze on established solutions giving rise to both opportunities and risks for everyone involved. OEMs and suppliers need to enhance their lightweight design capabilities, not only to encompass alternative lightweight design materials, but also innovative joining and bonding technologies for hybrid design technologies or hybrid solutions. In the next years, the range of traditional to alternative drive systems will require lightweight, cost-effective and, above all, modular body solutions which can only be realized with a high level of vehicle system expertise.
Against this background, body suppliers must expand their solution capabilities to cover a large range of lightweight materials from high-strength and super high-strength steels, aluminum, and magnesium to fiber-reinforced plastics as a basis for future-proof business models. They can also supplement their capability profiles by entering into partnerships or pursuing a mergers & acquisitions strategy. In addition, suppliers must push the internationalization of their manufacturing capacities to help OEMs localize their lightweight design solutions. All of these steps require increasingly high investments in engineering competencies and capacities, new manufacturing sites, and new plant concepts. Consequently, for many suppliers, it is not just a matter of setting the strategic direction for lightweight design, but also of obtaining growth financing, for which company size and access to the capital market are key success factors. As one of the future core capabilities in automotive R&D, lightweight design in particular holds enormous potential for Engineering made in Europe!
Member of the FACC AG Management Board as Chief Operating Officer
Innovation Manager, Emerging Technologies and Concepts, Airbus Operations GmbH, Hamburg Abstract
Aircraft construction places high demands on design and manufacturing. The chal-lenge is to manufacture sophisticated parts and components efficiently, affordably and as environmentally friendly as possible. How can it be done?
3-D printing has been making headlines for several years. Unlike conventional methods of production, products are not stamped, sawn or cut out of a material block, rather a part is built layer by layer. This has numerous advantages: it uses less material and energy, which in turn protects resources and the climate. Designers also have greater freedom in part de-sign. And, prototypes, single pieces, or small series of products can be manufactured with relative ease and inexpensively. However, to date only certain materials have been able to be used for additive manufacturing (AM), such as plastics or easy-to-melt alloys.
The "LaserCUSING" process is also suitable for different types of steel, precious metals such as gold and silver alloys as well as metal alloys based on titanium. A high-energy fiber laser light melts the powdered metal. The material hardens as it cools. The laser under computer control scans the powered material line by line and creates the desired shape. To build the complete product, after every layer is applied, the laser moves down by several dozen micrometers and scans the next layer. A patented stochastic control system ensures that even large components like those used in aerospace construction can be printed largely without stresses.
The core of the innovation is the fully digital manufacturing process. In this process, the 3-D printer is integrated in a continuous digital process chain in which the individual steps of production including material logistics and quality assurance are automatic and coordinated. Experts refer to this revolutionary concept as Industry 4.0, and its development and imple-mentation has been pushed by researchers and companies in Germany.
Airbus is using the process manufacture a titanium alloy bracket which is used to attach the crew rest area onboard the new A350 XWB jetliner and has been in use since 2015 on the A350. LaserCUSING, as a 'green technology', reduces not only the ecological manufactur-ing footprint, but also shortens the aircraft's downtime during maintenance: Required spares can be printed on demand and on site. At Airbus plans are in the works to use 3-D printing to produce additional components in future - and to use the pioneering process to create innovative design elements: such as bionic parts modeled on nature.
The importance of 3-D printing of metal products extends to sectors beyond aircraft con-struction. The technology is expected to replace or complement conventional manufacturing methods in many industries such as vehicle construction, manufacturing and engineering which are so important to Germany. Experts anticipate that the market for 3-D printing will increase fivefold over the next few years.
Executive Board Member, voestalpine Metal Forming GmbH, Krems Chair



Vice President, Upper Austria Economic Chamber, Linz

 CEO and Owner, SERY* Creative Communications Inc., Linz-Leonding
 Since 2006 Founder, "EU-Russian Brand Alliance"
 Since 2010 Chairwoman of the Austrian Advertising Association, Austrian Economic Chamber
 Since 2015 Vice President of the Upper Austrian Economic Chamber

Mag. Dr. MBA Michael STRUGL

Deputy Governor, State of Upper Austria, Linz

1982-1991 Diplomstudium der Rechtswissenschaften, Johannes Kepler Universität Linz
1998-1999 LIMAK General Management Program, Linz, Emory University/Atlanta
2000-2001 Studium "International Finance", Graduierung zum MBA, University of Toronto
  während des Studiums: IMAS-Meinungsforschungsinstitut Linz
2005-2013 Doktoratsstudium der Sozial- und Wirtschaftswissenschaften, Johannes Kepler Universität Linz
1987-1995 ÖVP Pressereferent Landesparteileitung Oberösterreich
1997 ÖVP Wahlkampfleiter OÖ Landtagswahl, Landesparteileitung Oberösterreich
1998 Creativ-Direktor, Werbeagentur Zoffel-Hoff & Partner, Wiesbaden
1999 Wahlkampfleiter Nationalratswahl, Österreichische Volkspartei
1995-2001 Stv. Landesgeschäftsführer, ÖVP Landesparteileitung Oberösterreich,
1997-2001 Mitglied des Bundesrates
  Wirtschaftskammerwahl Österreich/Oberösterreich
2000 Entwicklung und Betreuung der Wahlkampagnen für Dr. Christoph Leitl und KommR Viktor Sigl,
2001-2013 Abgeordneter zum OÖ. Landtag
2001-2013 Landesgeschäftsführer, ÖVP Landesparteileitung Oberösterreich
2003 Wahlkampfleiter OÖ Landtagswahl, ÖVP Landesparteileitung Oberösterreich
2003-2009 Klubobmann, ÖVP Landtagsklub
2009 Wahlkampfleiter OÖ Landtagswahl, ÖVP Landesparteileitung Oberösterreich
seit 2013 Landesrat für Wirtschaft, Arbeit, Tourismus, Raumordnung Regionalentwicklung, Europa und Sport, Land OÖ
seit 2015 Landesrat für Wirtschaft, Arbeit, Energie, Tourismus, Sport, Raumordnung, Regionalentwicklung und Europa
seit 2017 Landeshauptmann-Stellvertreter Land OÖ und in der OÖ Landesregierung zuständige Regierungsmitglied für Wirtschaft, Arbeit, Forschung, Wissenschaft, Energie, Tourismus, Raumordnung, Landesholding, Europa und Sport

Dr. Amer AFFAN

Managing Director, Affan Innovative Structures LLC, Dubai

 BSC, Edinburgh University, Scotland
 Structural Engineer, Mero / Mannesmann
1987 Phd in Structural Engineering, University of Cambridge
1994-2004 Mero / Mannesmann, Dubai
2004 Establishment, AFFAN Innovative Structures L.LC, Dubai


Managing Director, Berylls Strategy Advisors GmbH, Munich

1982-1985 BA Economics Stanford University
1985-1990 Diplom-Kaufmann and Dr. rer.pol., Bamberg University
1990-2011 Partner Automotive Practices, Oliver Wyman
since 2011 Managing Director, Berylls Strategy Advisors


Member of the FACC AG Management Board as Chief Operating Officer

1984-1986 Design Engineer, Fischer Ski &Tennis
1987-1988 Project Engineer, Fischer Ski & Tennis
1988-1991 Project- and Design Engineer, FACC AG, Ried im Innkreis
1992-1997 Program Manager, FACC AG, Ried im Innkreis
1998-2000 Business Development Manager, FACC AG, Ried im Innkreis
2001-2008 Vice President Structures, FACC AG, Ried im Innkreis
2008-2011 Executive Vice President Aerostructures, FACC AG, Ried im Innkreis
since 2011 Chief Executive Officer, FACC AG, Ried im Innkreis


Innovation Manager, Emerging Technologies and Concepts, Airbus Operations GmbH, Hamburg

2006-2009 Bachelor of Science in Engineering, Innovation and Product Management, University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria
2008-2009 Erasmus International Product Design Engineering, Hanzehogeschool Groningen
2009 Research and Development Mercedes-Benz Cars, Innovation Studio Department Intern, Daimler AG, Stuttgart
2009-2011 Master of Science in Engineering, Innovation and Product Management, University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria
2011-2012 Project Management Cabin0 A350 XWB, Cabin/Fuselage Strategy, Configuration and Change Management, Airbus Operations GmbH, Hamburg
since 2012 ETC - Emerging Technologies and Concepts, Airbus Operations GmbH, Hamburg


Executive Board Member, voestalpine Metal Forming GmbH, Krems

1986-1991 Sales, flat steel products, Scandinavia & Switzerland, voestalpine Stahl GmbH, Linz
1992-1995 Representive, voestalpine Stahl GmbH, Authorised Officer Metalservice S.P.A., Italy
1995-2003 Executive Board Director-Managing Director, Metalservice S.P.A., Veneta Nastri S.R.L., Cosivi S.R.L., Italy
2003-2007 Managing Director, voestalpine Stahl Service Center GmbH
2007-2012 Chairman of the Executive Board, voestalpine Polynorm NV
2012-2013 Director of new formed Business Unit Automotive Body Parts, voestalpine Metal Forming GmbH, Linz
since 2013 Executive Board Member, voestalpine Metal Forming GmbH, Linz

Economic Symposium

show timetable


10:00 - 12:30Charity Soccer Match - Good Game, Good CauseSocial
14:00 - 14:30OpeningPlenary
14:30 - 16:00Changing World - Changing WaysPlenary
16:10 - 16:45Meet the Speaker: Cesar HidalgoPlenary
16:10 - 16:45Meet the Speaker: Robin ChasePlenary
16:30 - 18:00Market Economy - Reinvent or Reboot?Plenary
18:30 - 20:00Fireside Talk "Future of Europe - Future of the European Economy"Partner
18:30 - 20:00ecoplus Lower Austria EveningSocial
20:00 - 21:30Migration - Opportunity and ChallengePlenary
21:30 - 22:30Illuminating AlpbachSocial


08:00 - 09:0016th management club Business BreakfastPartner
08:00 - 09:00Country Breakfast Georgia - Ways Out of CorruptionPlenary
08:00 - 09:00Country Breakfast Israel - the Country of Start-UpsPlenary
08:00 - 09:00Country Breakfast South Korea - Education Is the KeyPlenary
09:00 - 10:30Digital Employees - Have No Fear, Technology Is HerePlenary
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 01: Online Platforms - New Working Conditions in the Digital AgeBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 02: The Role of a Modern State for the Economy and SocietyBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 03: The European Data Economy Needs a New Enlightenment!Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 04: Crowdsourcing - If You Have a Problem, Ask Everyone!?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 05: Regional Hidden Champions: Ready for the Future?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 06: New Values, New Ambitions? How Traditional Leadership Is Challenged by MillennialsBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 07: Motivate and Regulate - Behavioural Economics as a New Approach in PoliticsBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 08: The 4th Industrial Revolution - Reurbanisation of ProductionBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 09: FinTechs, Crowdfunding and Online Consultancy - a Change for the Whole Financial Industry?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 10: Digital Transformation Through Business Model InnovationBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 11: The Power and Myth of CreativityBreakout
13:30 - 15:00Lunch ReceptionSocial
13:45 - 14:45World.Economy.Austria. Successful Ideas for Our CountryPartner
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 12: International Trade - Past, Present, FutureBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 13: Where Fear Reigns, Reason FadesBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 14: Big Data - a Vision of the Future, or: the End of Coincidence?Breakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 15: Leadership & Responsibility - How Responsible Leaders Do Good and Irresponsible Leaders Create HavocBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 16: Stay Innovative - the Example of Light Weight DesignBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 17: Live or Let Die? The Evolution of the Economy - Darwinism Mixes Up the MarketsBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 18: The Energy Transition - a Test for Our Economic SystemBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 19: Quo Vadis Digital Europe/Austria?Breakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 20: Hands on Jam Session - Business as Unusual: Open Innovation and Service Design ThinkingBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 21: Opinion Making Between Transparency and Headline FeverBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 22: Transparency - Cui Bono?Breakout
18:30 - 20:00Switch - Changing Culture, Changing Business?Plenary
19:00 - 20:30Myths and Facts. How Is it with the Austrian Economic and Social System?Partner
22:00 - 00:00Magenta NightSocial


08:00 - 09:00Breakfast ClubPlenary
08:30 - 09:30"Kater" BreakfastPartner
09:00 - 10:30Digital Entrepreneurship in EuropePlenary
09:00 - 10:30Fully Connected - Fully Enlightened or Fully Enslaved? - Peter Drucker Morning SessionPlenary
11:00 - 12:30Different Countries, Different Solutions - Economic Cultures in ComparisonPlenary
12:40 - 13:15Meet the Speaker: Lung YingtaiPlenary
12:40 - 13:15Meet the Speaker: Philipp BlomPlenary
16:30 - 20:00Economic DialoguePartner