Between 26th and 30th November 2022, three FEMM Hub PhD students from the Electronic and Electrical Engineering Department, University of Sheffield attended a week-long winter school at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Karlsruhe, Germany.   Applications were invited from across Germany, with a special invitation to all FEMM Hub PhD students, to apply for this Winter School which aims to inspire young engineering researchers to grow their connections and allow them an opportunity to present to fellow engineers.

FEMM Hub PhD students at KIT Winter School – (L-R: Wei Liang Choong, Dan Harper, Reece Elbet)

During the Winter School students, including the FEMM Hub PhD’s Choong, Dan and Reece, presented a summary of their research projects to researchers from across engineering disciplines and backgrounds with time for questions at the end. The five days at KIT also consisted of visits to the various laboratories within the institute, including the manufacture of stators and windings and various vehicle testing facilities, a focus of KIT research. The visit allowed for our FEMM Hub students to network with familiar minded academics from similar stages of their career.

With KIT being famous for engineering minds such as Carl Benz and Heinrich Hertz, the researchers were invited to a special memorial talk in memory of the famous automotive engineer Benz. A collection of professors from KIT, Mercedes Benz and the State Secretary for Digital Affairs and Transport presented about sustainability within the mobility and automotive sector across Germany. A particular talk from Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jürgen Fleischer, Director of Machines, Equipment and Process Automation at KIT, shone light on the work being done on the production within the electromobility sector. The professor from KIT tackled the rising uncertainties and demands with electrical machine production with views towards ecological responsibilities. The progress made in the production system was addressed, particularly regarding battery and cell disassembly.

The first inaugural Winter School event so successful that it will now run annually. Our FEMM Hub members returned with an increased network and an insight into the work going in similar industries, whilst also obtaining new ideas that can help them with their research. They look forward to collaborating with KIT in the future.

If you have any questions about this event, please get in touch with FEMM Hub Manager, Laura O’Keefe (L.Okeefe@sheffield.ac.uk).

Words by Dan Harper, University of Sheffield