Sustainable Integrated Product Development

Puzzle pieces
Christian Horz

Development of new technology and correlated changes in society are fast and pose challenges on engineers, product developers and companies. The research group of Sustainable Integrated Product Development conducts research focusing on both industrial and technical design methodologies and strategies with a strong focus on sustainability.

Through our research, we can support companies to predict, adapt and cope with future challenges in product development. We facilitate development of better and more attractive products while always focusing on sustainability aspects. Many of our projects result into physical prototypes ranging from packaging machines to humanoid robots.

Research areas

Choice of material, development of new material applications
Product Safety and System Safety
Product Development methodology and related tools
Affective Product Development; designing the “right” feeling into products
User acceptance; cognitive HMI
Machine Elements

Results and Purpose

We create environmentally friendly products
We create product customers want to have; even desire
We support companies in their strive to improve product development both as a strategy and in resulting products; thereby significantly improving their competitiveness
We educate students to face future challenges by closely working with industry

Examples of research

Research in lighter products results in less materials used for equivalent functionality, which in turn saves material and reduces energy consumption in sourcing, manufacturing, transport, use and end of life treatment. Hence, saving the environment but at the same time enabling the desired functionality. However, in several aspects these products look, feel and function differently than their conventional predecessors (e.g. electric cars vs. cars with internal combustion engine). This means, that customer/user acceptance must already be created in the ideation of the product development process
Industrial robots’ application it increasing. Latest trends in industry tend towards physical cooperation between robots and humans in production facilities. This however, pose significant health and safety risks. Working environments and robots must be designed in the right way to minimise these risks. 


Financier and partners

Some of our financier and partners