Under the direction of Niedersächsisches Forschungszentrum Fahrzeugtechnik (NFF), a consortium was formed, consisting of acknowledged scientific partners, market-leading industrial companies and highly innovative small and medium-sized companies (KMU). In the autumn of 2012, this consortium successfully faced the competition, as part of the support initiative “Forschungscampus – öffentlich-private Partnerschaft für Innovationen“ (public-private partnership for innovations) of the federal ministry for education and research (BMBF), with the “Open Hybrid LabFactory – material development and production technology for the economic and multi-functional lightweight construction“.
In the Open Hybrid LabFactory, competencies for the functional hybrid lightweight construction will be created, in particular with regard to material and production technology. This is meant to be the economically and ecologically sustainable production of lightweight components made from metals, plastics and textile structures. This also requires the development of manufacturing and production technologies suitable for mass production. For this purpose, the complete value-added chain for hybrid components is mapped in the research factory, from the conceptional design to the production of carbon fibres and textiles as well as the hybrid manufacturing process up to recycling.
Thus in all process steps in the “Open Hybrid LabFactory“ internationally operating technology leaders are involved providing their competence for the establishment of the jointly used research factory. A comprehensive cooperative research shall take place in which potentials so far not accessible in material development and in economic lightweight construction shall be improved by synergies along the process chain. The new competence and research centre for economic lightweight construction and innovative material and production technologies will be built in Wolfsburg, not far from the main plant of the Volkswagen AG, in close proximity to the MobileLifeCampus.