Smart Production & Organization

Rapidly evolving market requirements and fast technological changes force enterprises to target-oriented implementation of smart production and organizational solutions. The continuous evaluation of new business models and according production processes or the modernization of existing production facilities are the foundation for future competitiveness. Therefore, a holistic approach involves modern production technologies, simulation tools, data analytics and continuous optimization of value creation processes.

Benjamin Massow
Benjamin Massow, B.Sc., M.Sc. Lecturer +43 512 2070 - 3924

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Robotics & Production Technologies

Target-oriented implementation of industrial robots, machine vision and automation are key factors for the development of new – or the modernization of existing – manufacturing facilities. Real offline simulation tools help to evaluate performance and potential flexibility or to optimize final software parts – even before real hardware is purchased.

Rapid advancement on all technological levels – e.g. collaborative robot systems, automated guided vehicles (AGVs) or computer vision systems based on machine learning – constantly change the opportunities at production facilities. Feasibility studies, technological concepts or function prototypes evaluate these technologies and facilitate their company-specific integration.

Production Planning, Optimization & Simulation

Operations research methods as well as computer based simulation studies are widely used to enhance the design of production and logistic systems. Furthermore, this studies support the decision making process for production planning and control. On the backdrop of integrated data processes and stochastics, the aim is to explore relationships and effects systematically.

Collecting, storing, collating and analyzing of data from production processes or products can be used for process or product improvements and for evaluating useful industrial internet of things (IIoT) scenarios. In-depth data analysis can be used to establish a monitoring system for processes or products and thus help to reduce response times to unplanned events.

Production Optimization within the context of lean and six sigma aims at an increase in efficiency and quality while simultaneously reducing cycle time. This can be achieved by either the application of analytical methods or by empowering the organization to execute the efforts by itself.

Technological Innovation & Organizational Transformation

The development and introduction of new products and (production) technologies is a major change for many companies, and especially SMEs, in their existing processes, strategies and business models. Holistic analysis and solution approaches consider the potentials of new (production) technologies and smart value-added processes for companies. Based on this, we develop a roadmap for successful implementation and the successful achievement of strategic goals which, if required, is divided into agile sprints.

Technological progress causes big changes both on the individual and on the organizational level. Sustainable and ongoing transformation is only possible if individual employees and the entire organization go along with this transition. By using qualitative research methods, company-specific challenges are analyzed in detail, appropriate success factors are developed and obtained findings are transferred into implementation recommendations.

At the intersection of new technologies and human behavior, (production) assistance systems as well as different interaction strategies and their effects on business processes are examined. Resulting studies investigate the acceptance, usability and ergonomics of technology, as well as the optimal transfer of necessary competences – transferred into company-specific training concepts.

Software & Automation Systems

Modern production facilities are strongly based on software and automation systems. For defining company-specific and target-oriented actions, an analysis of processes and according software systems must be carried out. By the development of a holistic approach and an according system respectively software design short-, medium-, and long-term expansion stages can be defined. This may include concepts and designs of new methods, tailor-made algorithms, and software modules – e.g. for operating and machine data logging, for integrating automated guided vehicles (AGVs), or for using machine learning algorithms. Furthermore, retrofitting – target-oriented modernization – of existing machines and plants can enable integration in existing software systems or into the industrial internet of things (IIOT).


Research areas displayed in a table.

Research areas at a glance


Start of project:
Februar 2015

Project staff:
Mag. (FH) Mario Moser, MSc
Assistenz der Projektleitung, from Februar 2015 until Dezember 2015

FH-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Gerhard Hillmer, MSc
ProjektleiterIn, from Februar 2015 until Dezember 2015

About the project:
This scientific study focuses on analysing and evaluating status of current people and leadership structures within a multinational company. Special focus is laid on discovering potentials for optimization related to an increasing change- und mental-diversity culture. Major aspects of the analysis are: - critical success factors in change processes - current communication cultures - actual fit- and misfit experience and impact on performance and motivation - perceived development perspectives - difference between "as is possibilities" and "to be concepts" - development of team based measures to enhance the employee engagement - HR & leadership development programs with respect to fit centered dialoges - prozesses to establisch a feedback culture - a common understanding related to business goals

Operational Excellence in der Prozessindustrie

Start of project:
Januar 2015

Project staff:
FH-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Gerhard Hillmer, MSc
ProjektleiterIn, from Januar 2015 until Dezember 2015

Mag. (FH) Mario Moser, MSc
Assistenz der Projektleitung, from Januar 2015 until Dezember 2015

About the project:
This qualitative study examines operational excellence systems in the field of process industries. Main element is the analysis of already existing approaches in international organisations and the development of a generic OPEX-Model for companies in this industry field. A multi-case study shows an integrated picture consisting of technological, organisational and human oriented elements.

Entwicklung eines Computerschanksystems

Start of project:
November 2014

Project staff:
Benjamin Massow, B.Sc., M.Sc.
ProjektleiterIn, from November 2014 until Dezember 2016

Thomas Hausberger, BSc, MSc
ProjektmitarbeiterIn, from Januar 2016 until August 2016

DI Dr. Andreas Mehrle
ProjektmitarbeiterIn, from November 2014 until August 2016

Michael Gerbl, BSc, MSc
ProjektmitarbeiterIn, from September 2015 until August 2016

Florian Fiegl, BSc MSc
StudentIn, from April 2015 until Dezember 2015

About the project:
The aim of this project, which was carried out together with Privatquelle Gruber and SFS-Fluidsysteme, is the development of an optimized tap for post mix (soda and syrup) as well as for beer. "Optimized" is reflected here primarily in the flavor of the tapped drinks: the usual high tapping CO2 dispensing - and associated strong loss of quality and taste - is reduced. In order to minimize dispension, a gentle pressure relief in an automatically adjustable compensator is necessary. For this purpose, an optimization loop consisting of (i) constructive modification, (ii) time-saving production in the additive manufacturing (AM) process, (iii) metrological evaluation at a test stand, and (iv) derivation of design improvements is repeatedly run through. At the same time, the introduction of the beverage syrup is developed, integrated into the simulation, and a corresponding control loop is developed and implemented on an embedded system. In order to make the results of this research project industrially feasible in the near future, the production design of the design is taken into account in the last optimization cycles.

Solardesign auf Knopfdruck

Start of project:
August 2016

Project staff:
FH-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Sebastian Repetzki
ProjektleiterIn, from August 2016 until Juni 2019

Matthias Decker, MSc
ProjektmitarbeiterIn, from August 2016 until Juni 2019

About the project:
The building sector accounts for more than 40% of energy consumption, making it one of the main sources of CO2 emissions in Europe. Vertical façade surfaces are suitable for generating solar power and solar heat, because the steep mounting of the modules offers high efficiency even in the winter months and prevents overheating in the height of summer. The aim is to develop a solar collector with a uniform, large-scale look, independent of the grid dimension, to meet the aesthetic requirements of architects. In connection with flexible production facilities and an automated 3D planning, the realization of ecologically and economically sensible solar facades is only a push of a button away.

  • Hillmer G. (2016). Process-Excellence in der Prozessindustrie, Prozessmanagement Summit, 23-24 Nov. Wien, Austria
  • Hillmer, G. (2016). Key Skills Development - Practical means to increase emotional intelligence in engineering education, International Conference on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations - "Development & Application of EI" 24 - 25 November 2016, Salzburg, Austria
  • Hillmer, G. (2016). PRiME based Responsible (self-)Management certificate, Responsible Management Education (RME) Research conference, 9-10 Nov 2016, Krems, Austria
  • Hillmer, G. (2016). Enhancing Engineering Education by including “responsibility” aspects in Curriculum Design, sefi Annual Conference 2016, 12-15 Sep 2016, Tampere University of Technology, Finland
  • Moser, M. (2014). OPEX 4.0 2014 – Prozessorientierte Excellence in serviceorientierten Unternehmen (Prozessmanagement Summit 2014), November, 24., Wien, Österreich.

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