Rapid Technology challenges smart thinkers


The Student Design Award for Rapid Manufacturing has been a success from the very start. 72 participants from all over Germany as well as neighbouring countries Belgium, France and Poland will be submitting their work by 30 March. The topics dealt with by students range from models for running shoes and bicycle frames, through jewellery, textile design and tableware to telecommunications and medical technology (e.g. artificial limbs and protective helmets for epileptics). The jury will confer in Erfurt on 12 April. Five jurors, including Janne Kyttänen from Freedom of creation, Prof. Dr. Raab from Coburg University and Prof. Dr. Andreas Gebhardt from Aachen University, will select the five best pieces of work. Assessment criteria will include comprehensive functional and problem-solving concepts based on generative methods, design and feasibility in terms of processing and costs. Particular emphasis will be placed on the latter aspect as the five best designs will be produced in time for the Rapid.Tech in May with the support of EOS, 3D Systems, CP-GmbH and Duisburg-Essen University. The Student Design Award for Rapid Manufacturing is sponsored by the Stiftung für Technologie, Innovation und Forschung Thüringen (STIFT: Foundation for Technology, Innovation and Research).
One such participant is Harald Cramer, who is about to graduate from the Faculty of Industrial Design at Magdeburg-Stendal University. He regards the Student Design Award for Rapid Manufacturing as a great opportunity for students to learn more about their own skills: “I know that the competition is tough in the workplace. That’s why I’m taking advantage of this contest to test my ideas under realistic conditions and tap contacts with other experts.” Harald Cramer is entering his technical design for a time trial bike called ORYX. What is innovative about this design is its one-sided wheel suspension and crank which is shifted to the inside. “As changing a wheel in the case of a puncture etc. takes up a lot of valuable time, a button makes it possible to simply pull the wheel down on one side. The ring-shaped crank is integrated in the bicycle frame where it encloses the chain. This provides protection from injury and improves aerodynamics“, claims Cramer, who envisages a career in a design agency and, like all of the participants in the competition, hopes for continued racing development of the market for generative manufacturing methods.
All of the winning projects will be exhibited as finished models during the Rapid.Tech – Trade Fair and User Conference for Rapid Technology – from 22 to 23 May 2007 in Erfurt. Prizes will be awarded by Thuringia’s Minister of the Economy, Jürgen Reinholz, on the first evening of the exhibition.