The FAPS institute was founded in 1982 under the supervision of Prof. Dr.-Ing. Klaus Feldmann as part of the newly established Production Technology field at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU). In 2009, Prof. Dr.-Ing Jörg Franke took over management of the institute. The institute overarching objective is the integration of all the manufacturing factory functions for a comprehensive computer-integrated concept.
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jörg Franke established the focus of research to be on innovative and interdisciplinary manufacturing process approaches to mechatronics products.
Research conducted at the institute encompasses the entire process chain for mechatronics products that begins with packaging electronic components, with the main focus on the assembly of electronic components (solder-printing, assembly, soldering, testing), and the production process of electrical drives (winding methods, joining techniques, magnet mounting). Also, the research focus considers the methods and equipment involved in development, along with the assembly of connecting and embedding the cable systems.
The institute is located at two sites. The first is at the FAU’s Technical Faculty campus in Erlangen, and the second is at the former industrial sites of AEG in Nuremberg. The chair currently has about 90 employees from interdisciplinary research fields in mechanical engineering, electronics engineering, computer sciences, mechatronics, mathematics and engineering management. Aapproximately 75% of employeees are funded by third-party sources. The institute research factory is about 2,500 m2 accomodating high-capacity machines and equipment for the manufacturing of mechatronics products. The quality of the mechatronics components and systems can be assessed by the existing test systems for climate, temperature changes and vibration models. Modern EDV systems facilitate computer-aided design and the simulation of products and processes.
A leading project of the chair is the Bavarian Technology Center for Electrical Drives (E|Drive-Center). The E|Drive-Center supports small- and medium-size enterprises for analyzing and optimizng the application, production-oriented processing and process design of components and systems for electrical drives. Furthermore, at the E | Home Center in Nuremberg, network of integrated solutions for social life across the university faculties with strong participation from different companies has been developed. Based on the principles and potentials explored at the E | Home Center, and in close cooperation with several Bavarian universities and private sector companies, products and services have been and are being designing for life in the future.
Another leading project is the Green Factory. The Green Factory in Bavaria combines the research expertise of all relevant fields within energy-efficient production disciplines, such as mechanical engineering, production engineering, electrical engineering, computer engineering, chemical engineering, materials science, and economics. These research fields consider all significant transformations of energy to movement, to lighting, to information processing. This even extends to for manufacturing processes as well as heating, cooling and air conditioning control, which are dedicated for the usage of energy in production, logistics and administration. With a clear focus on energy efficiency in production, the interdisciplinary collaboration of the Green Factory Bavaria is integrated into an internationally viable research network.
Furthermore, the chair cooperates closely with the association of Molded Interconnected Devices (3-D MID) to develop technologies for the integration of mechanical and electronic functions on injection-molded interconnect devices (www.3d-mid.de).
The FAPS institute is also involved in teaching activities for support of the Department of Mechanical engineering in the following disciplines:
- Mechanical engineering
- Industrial engineering and management
- International production engineering and management