One of the highlights within the scope of the core topic "industry 4.0" was collaborative robots, as the new aid workers are called within the sector. This was not only a core topic but also an eye-catcher. While conventional robots are so far separated from the human work processes by safety fences, these collaborative robots shall work directly with humans and thus support workers in their activities.
There are two “new” generations on the labor market: Who are the people behind Generation Y and Z, what do they stand for and are they changing the working world? Some companies will have to change their behavior and structure, because these generations do have different demands towards their working places compared to those before.
The Hannover Messe starts on April 24, 2017, and we are again excited to see what awaits us. There is one specific topic that stands in the foreground: The lead theme of the Hannover Fair this year is “Integrated Industry – Creating Value”.
Without question, engineers have to deal with many important tasks in their daily life. Their responsibilities are always being extended with everything a top priority which increases time pressure: more and more projects need to be handled with increasing demands in less time but stable quality. In addition, smartphones, tablets and notebooks are pinging and blinking continuously. How is it possible to use working time efficiently despite these facts?
Engineers need to consider several aspects for selecting the appropriate coupling such as the type of installation, primary and secondary connection, available space of installation, ease of mounting and dismounting as well as maximum rotational speed and resilience of the coupling. To compensate physical parameters or changes that are not obvious the safety factor, also known as safety multiple or safety coefficient, is taken into account.
In an increasingly complex working world simple processes can be performed by machines, numerous data sources and cross-functional targets such as sustainability and efficiency need to be considered. This leads to increasing demands on employees – a challenge also engineers are facing.
Details are important for engineers. The smallest discrepancies may have major consequences in their job. Therefore being precise is essential. This applies for the design activity as well as for communication among colleagues: Describing faulty processes and listening carefully to descriptions are everyday tasks of engineers. For these tasks the dialogue is the most obvious tool – yet its importance is underrated.
Elastomers are polymeric materials which have the property of high elasticity. By virtue of this elasticity in combination with their damping capability, elastomers are the preferred material for use as transmission elements in elastic or highly elastic couplings. 
Catching you up on market news – Augmented & virtual reality and 3D printing: how to make the inconceivable tangible
3D printing meanwhile offers outrageous possibilities also for mechanical engineering; some highlights have been presented at the formnext 2016. This technology used to be considered as expensive, limited and quite slow, but the rapid development in this field led to innovative and flexible systems for production. Other news we have been really enthusiastic about are further developed augmented or virtual reality systems which can improve processes in manufacturing industries.
One of the distinguishing properties of elastomers is their high elasticity. The main characteristics of elastomers present themselves, in particular when comparing them to steel. Below we would like to elaborate on the main properties of elastomers in more detail. Figure 1 shows the main characteristics of elastomers. They are able to combine spring properties as well as damping ability in one component.