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News Article | May 9, 2017

Painting in an immersion bath: Industrial water and paints can be sterilized with electric impulses. Credit: Photo: Eisenmann Most paints for households or industry are based on water and, hence, are environmentally more compatible than paints based on solvents. Water-based paints, however, have one drawback: Microorganisms, such as bacteria, feel very comfortable and spread. This also affects paint shops of automotive industry and other sectors. Sterilization of industrial water and paints with electric impulses is the objective of the DiWaL cooperation project funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). This project is coordinated by researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and executed in cooperation with partners from research and industry. Whether brightly colored or classic gray or black: Before a car is painted, the body is cleaned, pre-treated, and provided with a corrosion-resistant coating by surface pre-treatment and electrophoretic immersion painting. The latter is an electrochemical process to produce a homogeneous paint coating by a DC voltage field in an immersion bath. "However, bacteria can reproduce well in the water and paints used and then adversely affect the quality of surface coating. To control these bacteria, biocides have been used so far. The new electric impulse technology works without chemical additives, reduces water consumption, and even contributes to water protection," says Dr. Wolfgang Frey of KIT's Institute for Pulsed Power and Microwave Technology, who coordinates the cooperation project "Dekontamination von industriellen Wässern und Lacken" (DiWaL, Decontamination of industrial water and paints). By means of electric impulses, cells or microorganisms are exposed to an electric field. The cell membrane is polarized, which means that electric poles form and aqueous pores open. This eventually results in the death of the microorganisms. This phenomenon is used on a large scale for the effective extraction of cell constituents and for killing microorganisms ("cold pasteurization"). As the electric impulses have a purely physical effect, bacteria are not expected to develop resistances, as they do in the case of biocides. "We control microbiological contamination and can achieve an optimum coating quality and prevent rework at the same time," Dr. Frey says. In automotive industry, painting of the body is the activity with the highest water consumption (up to 600 liters per car body). For this reason, the electric impulse technology is integrated into a new, automated, and resource-efficient water management and plant concept for pre-treatment and immersion painting developed by research and industry partners under DiWaL. By means of this process, the water cycle at the factory is optimized and freshwater consumption is to be reduced. Technical implementation focuses on the aspects of quality, costs, and the environment. The user perspective also is considered highly important. That is why DiWaL analyzes the requirements of the users as well as potential obstacles. The results will then be incorporated in design and technical development. DiWaL pools the expertise of partners from research (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and Pforzheim University of Applied Sciences) and industry, namely, a plant manufacturer (Eisenmann SE), two paint producers (Emil Frei GmbH & Co. KG and PPG Deutschland Business Support GmbH) as well as an automotive manufacturer (BMW Group). The project focuses on both surface treatment for automotive industry (cathodic immersion painting) and applications for general industry, e.g. painting of industrial goods by anodic immersion painting. Technical, economic, and ecological framework conditions and requirements are taken into account.

Blankenbach K.,Pforzheim University | Buckley E.,Pixtronix
IEEE/OSA Journal of Display Technology | Year: 2012

This paper compares the readability and color performance of LED- and laser-based head-up displays (HUDs) for various ambient light conditions. Using formal color models with reference to automotive standards, it is shown that HUDs employing laser sources exhibit superior performance in terms of readability and chromaticity compared to TFT-LCD systems based on white or RGB LEDs. © 2006 IEEE.

Thimm H.,Pforzheim University
EEEIC 2016 - International Conference on Environment and Electrical Engineering | Year: 2016

It is possible to streamline Environmental, Health and Safety (EH&S) duties through the use of workflow management technology. This approach requires to specify workflow models which among others consist of activities. In order to meet given safety regulations these activities are to be completed correctly and within given deadlines. Otherwise, activity failures emerge which may lead to breaches against safety regulations. A novel domain-specific workflow meta data model is proposed. The model enables a system to detect and predict activity failures through the use of data about the company, failure statistics, and activity proxies. Since the detection and prediction methods are based on the evaluation of constraints specified on EH&S regulations a system approach is proposed that builds on the integration of a Workflow Management System (WFMS) with an EH&S Compliance Information System. Main principles of the failure detection and prediction are described. For EH&S managers the system shall provide insights into the current failure situation. This can help to prevent and mitigate critical situations such as safety enforcement measures that are behind their deadlines. © 2016 IEEE.

Lambrecht H.,Pforzheim University | Thissen N.,Pforzheim University
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2015

Material and energy flow analysis (MEFA) is used by many companies for sustainability assessments of their production systems. MEFA generally leads to large and complex system models for which optimal operating conditions are hard to find manually. This article therefore presents an extension of MEFA towards mathematical programming that provides powerful methods for system optimization. A theoretic concept for this methodological integration is developed, illustrated by means of a simplified example and finally applied to a case study of an industrial waste treatment scenario. Technical feasibility is thus demonstrated. Moreover, the algebraic transformation of material flow models into mathematical programs reveals, on a conceptual level, the basic principles of an optimization-oriented MEFA. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Schmidt M.,Pforzheim University
Chemical Engineering and Technology | Year: 2010

Resource efficiency in companies targets economic and efficient use of materials and energy in production. On the one hand, this aims to contribute towards sustainable development and, on the other hand, efficient use of resources can save costs and improve the competitiveness of a company. This aspect is becoming all the more important in the light of current developments in world market prices for natural resources. In Germany, the use of materials and energy currently accounts for about 46% of the gross value of goods manufactured by companies. It is known from various sources that the average potential for savings here is 10-15%. The material costs alone can be reduced by 2-3% through efficient management. The potentials for saving lie less in the individual technologies applied and more in the interplay within and between the complex production systems. That is why one key challenge facing the industry is to ascertain the hidden costs that are in fact linked with inefficiencies in a company. Analysis methods and approaches are necessary for this, such as for example the material and energy flow analysis. © 2010 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

Moser A.K.,Pforzheim University
Journal of Consumer Marketing | Year: 2015

Purpose – The theory of planned behavior (TPB) served as a framework for identifying major antecedents of everyday green purchasing behavior and for determining their relative importance. Design/methodology/approach – The German market research institute GfK provided data (n = 12,113) from their 2012 household panel survey. A two-step structural equation modeling approach was applied to test both the measurement and the structural model. Findings – Willingness to pay (WTP) was the strongest predictor of green purchasing behavior, followed by personal norms. The impact of attitude is insignificant. This implies an attitude – behavior gap. Research limitations/implications – Individuals overestimate their self-reported WTP and behavior, which suggests that the share of explained variance is in reality lower. It has to be doubted whether consumers are objectively able to judge products by their environmental impact. Even if consumers are willing to buy a “greener” product, their subjective evaluation might be incorrect. Further research should be based on actual purchasing data. In addition, the attitude – behavior gap should be scrutinized by further research to identify further barriers to green consumption. Practical implications – Consumers need to be aware that their consumption behavior can make a difference. They have to value the benefits of green products and understand why these are priced higher. Firms can apply pricing and promotional strategies addressing personal norms and inducing a higher WTP to capitalize on the opportunities of the green market segment. Originality/value – The study integrates WTP and personal norms as critical predictors into the TPB and furthermore expands the extant literature on green purchasing behavior to cover daily consumer goods extending beyond organic food. This enhances understanding of the structure of the constructs and determines their relative importance. © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

Thimm H.,Pforzheim University
2015 IEEE 15th International Conference on Environment and Electrical Engineering, EEEIC 2015 - Conference Proceedings | Year: 2015

It is the ultimate goal of environmental compliance management to assure corporate compliance with given regulations and to prepare possibilities for ad hoc proofs of the company's positive compliance status. The awareness of events that can cause a negative compliance status is a key factor of successful environmental compliance management. However, the issue of risk management has so far gained only little attention in the environmental compliance research community and also by practitioners. In this article an information system based risk management approach for corporate environmental compliance management is proposed. The focus is on the risk estimation method that in a final step aggregates all identified risks into a risk profile. Furthermore, through expert knowledge represented in a rule base the system is able to generate risk mitigation actions. © 2015 IEEE.

Material Flow Cost Accounting (MFCA) enables companies to identify the added value they lose as a result of material losses. MFCA can also be understood as a special allocation method for distributing the costs in a production system to both the products and the material losses. A mathematical algorithm for this purpose that can be deployed flexibly is presented. It is based on the physical quantity structure of the energy and material flows in a production system. These physical quantities can then be taken to represent monetary values or environmental impacts. From an economic standpoint the outcome is the known MFCA. From the environmental standpoint it is possible to calculate what environmental impacts could be saved by reducing the material losses. The process can also be used to analyze internal recycling flows and their potential for economic and ecological improvement. In particular, the algorithm is suitable for creating software solutions that can perform transparent cost accounting as well as environmental accounting with consideration given to the MFCA approach for all kinds of complex production systems and supply chains. This supplies valuable information that can help companies in deciding what material flow-related measures are suitable for saving costs and reducing environmental impacts. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Weyer M.,Pforzheim University
International Journal of Production Research | Year: 2011

In the global automobile industry, the Hours-Per-Vehicle factor (HPV) is turning more and more into a key indicator for personnel productivity analysis of a production plant. HPV rankings are compiled and personnel goals are derived from comparison of HPV benchmarks. Besides program units and the budget, HPV is advancing to be one of the dominant controlling indicators. Against this background, there is an increasing demand for effective HPV controlling. The major task of such controlling is to ensure the required transparency for the influencing variables as well as to recommend measures to improve personnel productivity. In this context, HPV controlling is not just to be incorporated in the existing target and controlling landscape, but also into existing personnel productivity improvement processes. This article takes up these requirements and demonstrates approaches to a solution. Moreover, it describes the potential and also the limits of HPV applications. © 2011 Taylor & Francis.

Pforzheim University | Date: 2013-12-05

A system may receive filter coefficients defining a digital filter. The system may select a signal processing quality criterion which describes a transformation that can be derived from an image and further describes the reconstruction of the image that can be derived from the transformation. The system may determine a degree of optimization that quantifies the signal processing quality criterion with the received filter coefficients. The system may vary the filter coefficients to obtain varied filter coefficients. The system may establish the degree of optimization with the varied filter coefficients. The system may compare the determined degree of optimization with the established degree of optimization.

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