FRIMO joins AZL partner network to intensify cooperation for innovative and sustainable plastics processing solutions
FRIMO Group, a full-service supplier for plastics processing solutions from Germany, is a new member, but not a newcomer in our international and cross-industry collaboration on composites. FRIMO has already contributed to a couple joint projects and now aims to intensify process development and research activities on a regular basis.
A broad range of plastics processing technologies is covered with customized solutions, from manual production to fully automated production lines, for small to large components in low or high-volume series. This also includes all types of thermoset and thermoplastic materials. The focus is on minimum weight with maximum performance and efficiency.
Dr. Sonja Krömer, Head of Research and Development at FRIMO Group, and Thomas Joachim, Director of Sales, will be the key contacts for the technology and business development cooperation with the AZL network. They have answered a few questions to introduce the FRIMO business and motivation for networking with the AZL Partner companies:
AZL: What are the main reasons for FRIMO entering into a partnership with AZL?
Thomas Joachim, FRIMO: We can already look back on a longstanding successful partnership with AZL. As an example, I would like to mention joint projects like i-Composite 4.0, as well as projects with IKV and other bilateral projects. Being proactive is key to achieving innovations and these kinds of projects offer a perfect platform to bring creative ideas together. Enhancing our networking and research activities is an important part within this process.
AZL: Do you have special research priorities in mind for future projects with the AZL partners?
Dr. Sonja Krömer, FRIMO: Yes, new materials, AI and IoT. That’s why we focus on developments for new materials, and we see an increasing importance for bio-based material applications. Future automation concepts will have to include more and more features to support and optimize process stability and safety, including through the integration of AI (artificial intelligence). Automated data collection and analysis from the production environment is offered by remote access (IoT). Not only data monitoring, but also data-based self-learning and self-adapting systems will be required, which must take all interfaces into account.
Thomas Joachim, FRIMO: We would like to join R&D programs of the AZL network which fit the FRIMO technology strategy.
This includes further development of FRIMO core technologies mainly for NFPP and Organosheets, but also technologies for wet compression and RTM composite topics. PU foam, thermoforming or joining solutions are relevant topics as well. We see great opportunities in cooperating with AZL and connected institutions for direct research programs or product cost benchmarks.
AZL: How is R&D organized at FRIMO to be successful and meet these future requirements?
Dr. Sonja Krömer, FRIMO: FRIMO has bundled an extremely broad spectrum of different technologies under one roof and it is a challenge to stay competitive in all of them. Our research and development therefore does not only focus on internal or customer related projects. The AZL network offers multiple options for us to gain synergies for our central R&D activities. Surface development, joining techniques or 3D printing are only a few of numerous examples I could mention here.
AZL: From a FRIMO perspective – what megatrends do you see for the coming years?
Dr. Sonja Krömer, FRIMO: One important trend is to increase sustainability. Here we are looking into the topics of recycling, renewable resources, reduction of the carbon footprint and energy-efficient processes.
The next topic is Industry 4.0, which includes things like automation, self-regulating processes, and predictive maintenance. And if we look at e-mobility as a global trend, important issues are lightweight construction, battery technology, and surfaces for autonomous vehicles or rental car fleets.
Thomas Joachim, FRIMO: Due to the international competition in tooling and machine building technology it becomes more and more important to develop the technology alongside the future megatrends. Partnering with a network of companies and people who are working on the same topics is the key to success.
It means we can work together to find solutions for lighter e-bikes or battery casings and connect these topics with process automation, recycling aspects and/or renewable raw materials.
AZL Partners interested in contacting Dr. Sonja Krömer or Thomas Joachim can visit their profiles in the AZL Partner Section.
Dr. Sonja Krömer
Head of Research & Development at FRIMO Group
Director of Sales at FRIMO Center of Competence Form & Punch