BioFusion 4.0

Integration of Biological Principles in Industry 4.0

Biological transformation is the transfer of principles of natural systems to technical materials, structures and processes. Its goal is to achieve sustainable value creation.

Essential concepts of biological transformation are inspiration (learning by observing nature for the adaptation of technology), integration (symbiosis of technical systems based on biological models) and interaction (interweaving of nature and technology).

The resulting new value creation must be understood systemically. The BioFusion 4.0 researchers are exploring the interdependencies between the principles of biological transformation and their interactions with production, services and work. 


Fraunhofer Technology Experience

We were happy to present our RnD in Brussels on December 1st, 2022 at the Fraunhofer EU Office Brussels event »From Belgian fries to your personal fork – Biological transformation in practice«.  

Strong partners for Berlin's future as a production location

© Mercedes-Benz AG
Developed Solutions in the Product Life Cycle

In a first step, the researchers are applying the principles of biological transformation to designing future scenarios for Berlin's industrial manufacturing. Building on this, they will develop models and methods in close coordination with industry partners to turn these scenarios into reality.

The developed solutions will be implemented at Mercedes-Benz AG's Berlin site, the Werner-von-Siemens Centre for Industry and Science e.V. (WvSC) and the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that are part of the consortium as application partners. In addition, suitable tools and processes are being developed in eight different use cases, resulting in an integrated technology demonstrator for bioinspired, biointegrated and biointelligent value creation.

Aside from mechanical and plant engineering and the waste disposal industry, products and processes along the value chain of different sectors will also serve as the industrial application areas of the project:

  • Battery control modules for battery electric vehicles,
  • vehicle components,
  • high-temperature systems of gas turbines,
  • electric drives for industrial applications, and
  • robotics automation solutions.

Application oriented solutions

The industry partners hope that the developed solutions will make production more sustainable, especially in terms of resource conservation and ergonomic production:
  • business models for biological transformation
  • smart recycling of valuable materials
  • engineering of biologically transformed products
  • bionic integration for networked production systems
  • ecologically intelligent services for production
  • biointelligent worker assistance systems
  • additive manufacturing with biogenic and degradable polymers

The technology companies plan to incorporate the developed solutions into their product portfolios, enabling their customers to engage in  sustainable production and increase their market share or reach new target customers. The diversity of the cases studied and partners involved ensures that the results can be transferred to various applications.

The Partners

  • Fraunhofer IPK: Consortial Lead
  • Technische Universität Berlin: Research partner
  • Mercedes-Benz AG, Werk Berlin: Application partner
  • Bral Reststoff-Bearbeitungs GmbH: Associated application partner
  • budatec GmbH: Application partner
  • Arburg GmbH: Technology partner (hardware)
  • COLLIN Lab & Pilot Solutions GmbH: Technology partner (hardware)
  • Contact Software GmbH: Technology partner (software)
  • GreenDelta GmbH: Technology partner (software)
  • Klero GmbH Roboterautomation: Application partner
  • ModuleWorks GmbH: Technology partner (software)
  • 5thIndustry GmbH: Technology partner (software)
  • Werner-von-Siemens Centre for Industry and Science e.V.: Associated partner

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Watch the recording of the Biofusion 4.0 future workshop on October 29, 2021 here [German only]! We are recapping the progress of the project so far and develop first results. Learn more about the topics biobased and bioinspired materials, circular economy and bioeconomy.

Funding notice

This research and development project is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) within the Framework Concept ”Research for Tomorrow’s Production” and managed by the Project Management Agency Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe, Production and Manufacturing Technologies Division (PTKA-PFT).

Interesting to:

  • Manufacturing industry
  • Software companies
  • SMEs
  • Sustainability officers

You are looking for:

  • Resource and CO2 reduction
  • Reduction of the ecological footprint
  • Increase in productivity
  • Increase of flexibility