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Young technical college students impressed with inventiveness and team spirit at the Fill Hackathon.
On December 14 and 15, Fill Machine Engineering in Gurten, Upper Austria, was a hive of activity away from the normal work processes. A total of 40 male and female students from the technical colleges (HTLs) in Andorf, Ried, Braunau, and Grieskirchen put their inventiveness to the test in five mixed teams of eight students. Within the framework of the mechatronic challenge, the aim was to solve tricky problems in the fields of design, 3D printing, automation, and programming. Without any restrictions in terms of creativity or software and hardware. Quite the opposite, in fact. The more creative the approaches taken, the greater the chance was to win one of the wonderful prizes. The young talents tackled the tasks enthusiastically. However, one team's project stood out from the numerous interesting and often unconventional solutions. Furthermore, the best groups of two were selected in each discipline. The successful teams were delighted with the prizes worth 3,000 euros.
Gurten, December 19, 2022 – "Young people have tremendous potential. With their enthusiasm, they often create remarkable solutions. And it was pretty amazing to experience this concentrated creative energy," says Alois Wiesinger, CTO (Chief Technology Officer) of Fill Machine Engineering, who was very impressed by the "Hackathon" participants.
Professional working conditions
The challenge extending across different disciplines and HTLs made the Fill Hackathon unique. The individual teams were composed of two students each from the HTLs in Andorf, Braunau, Grieskirchen, and Ried. A total of five such teams took part in the challenge. An order process had to be represented in a laboratory environment by the team of 8. The task was to collaborate with the other students, to learn from one another, and to complete a project successfully together under deadline pressure. Fill provided each team with a professional laboratory environment featuring 3D printers, all the necessary tools, and various utensils. The young talents achieved exceptional results, often with a playful approach.
The starting point for the order process was a user interface programmed by the students. The jury used this to place an order for a 3D-printed Fill "Filli Future" mascot. Upon order entry, the driverless transport system (FTS) received the start command to gather the individual parts in the hall as quickly as possible and without any collisions. The components had previously been designed and optimized by the design team and made by the 3D printing team. A set of assembly instructions also had to be produced. In the goods issue area, the FTS automatically unloaded the collected components at the goods issue box. Once assembled by the jury, the performance of the individual disciplines was evaluated under consideration of given criteria.
Closing event in the Fill Future Dome
The individual groups presented their developed projects and solutions to around 150 classmates, teachers, and coaches in the Fill Future Dome on December 16. "All of the work shown was outstanding. The young people approached the task with tremendous commitment and had lots of fun with it as well. A remarkable achievement by all participants," said Alois Wiesinger in praise of the high standard of projects presented. The winner of this challenge was team 4, comprising Luca Kraus and Viktoria Reiter (HTL Ried), Simon Hehenberger and David Haginger (HTL Andorf), Stefan Berghammer and Michael Weindl (HTL Braunau), and Janik Neissl and Lea Seifried (HTL Grieskirchen). "The Hackathon at Fill was a great experience! A good example of working together well! We learned a great deal! Fun all round! It was awesome and we learned a lot!" – the eight students were delighted with their success and the great prizes at the first Fill Hackathon. The extraordinary initiative was brought to a successful end with a fantastic atmosphere and lively discussions between different generations at the closing event in the Fill Future Dome.
Fill is a leading international machine engineering company based in Gurten, Upper Austria. With sophisticated high-tech systems and custom manufacturing solutions for metal, plastics and wood, Fill makes its customers the best in their fields. The automotive, aviation, sports and building industries all benefit from Fill's expertise. Since it was founded in 1966, the company has distinguished itself through enormous innovative strength, strong values and the best jobs. “If you are seeking the best solution, shape your future with Fill” is the guiding principle of the company’s more than 950 employees. “Wir sind 1! We are one!” is their vision and stands for togetherness not only with the team, but also with customers, suppliers and partners. The company is 100 percent family-owned and managed by Andreas Fill (CEO), Martin Reiter (CSO), Alois Wiesinger (CTO), and Günter Redhammer (COO). In 2021, Fill recorded sales of around 180 million euros.
The winning team members were overjoyed with their success and the great prize at the first Fill Hackathon.
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