Funding goes to Freiburg, Germany
"A lot of good things have happened to us – we want to give something back," say Walter and Ingeborg Herrmann. The Pforzheim entrepreneurs, through their Walter and Ingeborg Herrmann Foundation, will donate €500 000 to the Institute for Sustainable Technical Systems (INATECH) at the University of Freiburg over the next five years – with the option of increasing the term and doubling the funding sum to a total of €1M.
The Walter und Ingeborg Herrmann Professorship for Engineering of Functional Materials is held by Prof Dr Frank Balle, who transferred from the Technical University of Kaiserslautern to the University of Freiburg on 1 April 2018. His research focus is on hybrid material systems created by material combinations. He uses power ultrasound to weld different materials together. "Our goal is to achieve lighter, more efficient and thus more sustainable structures that fulfil new functions and yet are cost-neutral in production," says Balle.
Walter and Ingeborg Herrmann founded today's Herrmann Ultraschalltechnik GmbH & Co.KG in Karlsbad (Karlsruhe district) in 1961. In addition to cancer research, youth welfare and care for the elderly, their foundation also aims to promote science and research in the field of physics in the bonding of plastics and non-ferrous metals. With their financial support of INATECH they want to contribute to the development of new engineering competences and process technologies in this field. "It is our concern to link ultrasonic joining technology with the important topics of tomorrow, especially sustainable mobility and energy concepts," emphasise Walter and Ingeborg Herrmann.
The University of Freiburg founded INATECH at the Technical Faculty in 2015. It is also the engineering core of the Sustainability Performance Centre, which the University runs jointly with the five Freiburg Fraunhofer Institutes.