Automotive and industrial supplier Schaeffler AG has opened a state-of-the-art Tool Technology Center at its facility in Höchstadt an der Aisch in Germany. Here, the company will manufacture its precision tools intended for its global production network.
Particularly, the output from the 8,000sq.m floor space will cater to Schaeffler’s strategic future target areas of e-mobility and robotics as well as mechatronic chassis applications.
“Schaeffler’s outstanding capabilities in toolmaking are now being given a new dimension in both technical and structural terms with the Tool Technology Center. Against the backdrop of the technological changes of our time, this is of outstanding importance,” says Georg F. W. Schaeffler, Family Shareholder and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Schaeffler AG.
In total, the company has made a multi-million investment in the Tool Technology Center. “Manufacturing excellence and innovative tool technologies are an integral part of the Schaeffler DNA. They have played a major role in the successful business development of the Automotive Technologies and Industrial divisions for more than 75 years,” explains Klaus Rosenfeld, Chief Executive Officer of Schaeffler AG. “The new Tool Technology Center, a unique selling proposition of Schaeffler across all sectors, unites this expertise at a single location.”
In addition, Rosenfeld added the tool center will serve as the driving force for future technologies. Particularly, the company aims the new center reflective of its motto, which is “We pioneer in motion”.
Since September 2021, the existing hall at the Höchstadt site have brought around 100 pieces of machinery. Among other things, it also produces punches and dies, which, combined as assemblies, forms strip steel.
The Tool Technology Center in Höchstadt includes a 7,000sq.m large manufacturing area and more than 1,000sq.m of office space. Thus, making a significant contribution to Schaeffler’s expertise in tool technology.
“Grouping our expertise together in Höchstadt is allowing Schaeffler to unite development, production, and tool manufacture at a single site so as to be in the best possible position to meet future customer requirements,” comments Andreas Schick, Chief Operating Officer at Schaeffler AG.
Moreover, Schick said automation and digitalization mean that high machine capacity utilization is always possible. This results in highly efficient, profitable operation of toolmaking in Germany. In addition, the toolmaking site will develop high-precision tools. Therefore, it will facilitate volume production of top quality products. Technologies such as aluminum die casting, plastic injection molding or die-cut stacking are critical, particularly in e-mobility.
Meanwhile, Wilfried Schwenk, Head of Global Tool Technology at Schaeffler, said three fully automatic robot lines and 50 processing machines are among the highlights of the center. Furthermore, critical element is digital connectivity.
“The machinery includes a state-of-the-art press with servo drive and a maximum pressing force of up to 630 tons…For example, with regard to installation space and other technical properties, for all of our customers’ presses,” said Schwenk.
guarantees all these lines and machines are all digitally connected.
“The machinery includes a state-of-the-art press with servo drive and a maximum pressing force of up to 630 tons. This press is used to map all requirements. For example, with regard to installation space and other technical properties, for all of our customers’ presses,” said Schwenk.
Accordingly, the Tool Technology Center is also capitalizing on digital solutions. The use “model-based definition” in the center is critical in the future. This method describes all production and process-relevant information directly on the 3D CAD model. Here, all data for digital processes is available from a single source, significantly reducing development times.