Our business units (departments) are oriented to materials-related research and development topics and the impacts upon a product's life cycle. In each phase the Fraunhofer IWM provides sustainable and innovative solutions for product and technology development processes. Each business unit has a clearly defined contextual focus, these being Materials Design, Manufacturing Processes, Tribology, Component Safety and Lightweight Construction and Assessment of Materials, Lifetime Concepts. The Fraunhofer IWM business units address central research themes which are related to energy and resource efficiency.

Fraunhofer IWM Business Units


Manufacturing Processes

Innovative manufacturing processes for precision contours and functional components with defined property profiles. Focus areas are powder and fluid systems, forming processes, machining processes and glass forming.



Solutions for reducing friction and for abrasion protection for bearings, seals and drive systems. Focus areas are micro tribology, tribological simulations, technical ceramics, lubricants, tribological coatings.


Component Safety and Lightweight Construction

Qualification of materials and components for mobility, energy, machinery and engineering. Focus areas are safety and lifetime analysis, crash simulation, joints, composite materials.


Assessment of Materials, Lifetime Concepts

Reliable systems for energy conversion and energy storage, material qualification for power plant technology. Focus areas are microstructure modeling, lifetime prediction, material models, hydrogen embrittlement, damage analysis.

Budget Fraunhofer IWM 


The operating budget is financed through external earnings and institutional funding (core funding). The operating budget for 2021 amounted to 25.4 million euro, of which 27.8% came from industry revenues. The investment budget for 2021 was 4.4 million euro.

At the end of 2021 the institute employed 257 permanent staff: 142 scientists, 45 technical staff and 70 infrastructure staff. Including the 78 academic assistants which included interns as well as 10 apprentices, the Fraunhofer IWM had 345 employees in 2021.

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