How to become a “Lightweight Professional”
Lightweight is a construction philosophy with the objective of a reduction in weight of a specific product or structure as well as an increase in its resource efficiency. “Lightweight Professional” is a new professional training course, which was developed within the framework of “LightRight”, a European project. Èric Hernández Edo, Lightweight expert at the Fraunhofer IFAM, explains how to become a "Lightweight Professional".
In contrast to many other professional training courses, “Lightweight Professional” is based on industrial needs. In order to collect the different opinions and needs of the European industry, four awareness workshops took place in four different European countries (Belgium, Germany, Italy and Spain). More than 130 companies from 18 different countries participated in the awareness workshops and answered four main questions: (1) why do we need lightweight?, (2) which technical challenges do you see in “applying” lightweight?, (3) which educational obstacles do you see in “applying” lightweight?, and (4) which possible course formats would you prefer?
Based on the answers of the industry, “Lightweight Professional” was designed with the well-known T-shaped structure in mind (see picture).
The introductory module will give an overview of lightweight design: product development strategies, construction guidelines, material knowledge related to properties and processes, manufacturing specifics, cost-value ratio, supply chain, as well as life-cycle assessment (LCA) and life-cycle-costing (LCC).
After successful completion of the introductory module, participants will be able to identify and distinguish between the different steps involved in developing lightweight products, as well as how to design, construct and set up processes with specific lightweight material in the correct way to fully utilize the lightweight potential. The basic level certificate will be awarded after the successful completion of the introductory module examination. To gain the advanced or expert level certifications, participants should successfully complete at least four of the material (FRP, aluminium, cast irons, steel, plastics, and magnesium and metal powders) or transversal modules. The material modules will be launched in 2020.
This professional training course is certified according to EN SIO 17024. This certification ensures that participants who successfully complete the course acquire the expertise and the practical knowledge needed to excel in the relevant area.
The first introductory modules will take place in 2019 in four different countries:
- In Munich (Germany), from September 3 to September 5, 2019 (in German);
- In Leuven (Belgium), from September 17 to September 19, 2019 (in English);
- In Bilbao (Spain), from October 8 to October 10 , 2019 (in Spanish);
- In Vicenza (Italy) on October 8, October 29, and November 19, 2019 (in Italian).