Makerthon #8

May, 31st 1:00pm until June, 2nd

48 Hours
6 Interdisciplinary Teams
2 Challenges

Take the chance to gain hands-on experience on product development based on the design thinking approach.
We are looking for passionate Makers who want to face real life challenges from industry in the fields of  "autonomous loader cranes" and "electric inverters" in interdisciplinary teams.

Get the challenge - find ideas - develop concepts and build a prototype - use your skills and motivation to beat the challenge!

The Makerthon takes place at the Schumpeter Laboratory for Innovation.


The Makerthon is the possibility to face a real challenge supported by leading industrial companies and the Institute of Innovation and Industrial Management.
Within 48 hours, makers have to
1 - understand the challenge
2 - detect the real problems
3 - generate ideas
4 - select the ideas
5 - realize prototypes and
6 - to tell the story, why the solution will change the business and our lifes!

Makerthon #3
Friday, May 17th 2019 until Sunday 19th

Makerthon #5: May, 28th 3 PM until May, 30th


For more information contact:

Andreas Kohlweiss

Challenge 1: Support System Concept for the Autonomous Loader Crane

Key Facts Palfinger
  • PALFINGER is the world's leading provider of innovative crane and lifting solutions

  • With around 12,300 employees worldwide

  • 34 production locations

  • over 5,000 global sales and service points

Situation / Object
  • Loader cranes have support systems at the crane with outriggers and stabilizer legs for stabilization. For trucks with bigger cranes there is the option to have an additional support system and even a front and a back support.

  • This support system can be operated via remote control or from the operator stand.

  • Depending on the type of stabilizer legs the operator needs to do additional manual activities like unlocking and locking the pivotable stabilizer legs.

Tasks / Objectives
  • Develop a support system solution which is suitable for an autonomous stabilizing process and therefore does not include any manual tasks by the operator.

  • Requirements:

    • Solution should be able to be operated autonomously

    • Completely new approaches for stabilizer concepts are desired

    • Solution may include alternative ways to bring the stabilizer legs in transport position

    • Solution should be able to level out as much unevenness as possible (include as much cylinder stroke for the stabilizer legs as possible)

    • Solution may take up the same or even less installation space

    • Maximum safety in operation as well as function of the solution



Challenge 2: Working Title "Initial Startup of Electric Inverters"

Key Facts AVL
  • Leading R&D expert in the areas of Automotive Powertrains, Drivetrain Solutions, Simulation & Testing

  • With more than 11.000 employees worldwide

  • Fields of Expertise:
    • Testing Solutions
    • Simulation Technologies
    • ADAS and Autonomous Driving
    • Battery
    • Calibration
    • Controls and Electronics
    • E-Drive
    • Engineering Services

Situation / Object
  • The SPECTRA Universal Inverter is a device which helps the E-Drive developers to test their E-Motor if no inverter is available in early stage of the development process.

  • One of the key topics is that the inverter should be quickly connectable configurable to the e-motor.

  • The inverter should be placed as close as  possible to the E-Motor to provide real testing conditions and to avoid losses in the cable.

Tasks / Objectives
  • Analyze the design and make design suggestion how to minimize the cable length.

  • Find a design which allows to open the cover faster than in the current design.

  • Analyze the so-called standalone software which is used to parameterize the inverter and make usability recommendations.

  • The commissioning is mainly done by Graz experts. Find a way that customers can do it by themselves or commission engineers which are no experts on the device.



Challenge 1

Key Facts ELIN Motoren
  • ELIN Motoren as part of Voith group is a global supplier for rotating electrical machines and life-cycle solutions
  • More than 120 years of experience in developing and producing rotating electrical machines
  • Business fields:
    • Wind Energy
    • Tunneling / Mining
    • Power Plants
    • Oil & Gas
    • Marine
  • Power range of machines beginning with 60 [kW] up to 50 [MW]
Situation / Object

Permanent magnet rotor design:

  • Rotor-skewing is possible for rotor-topologies with surface permanent magnets (discrete skewing).
  • Rotor skewing with buried magnets is not possible. This is bypassed by skewing the stator instead of the rotor.
Task / Objectives:
  • Find a method for rotor-skewing with buried permanent magnets in the case of the  segmented and non-segmented rotor-topology.
  • Pay special attention to:
    • Torque transmission
    • Feasibility of the manufacturing process

Challenge 2

Key Facts PAYER Medical
  • Leading and worldwide acting OEM/ODM Personal Care- and Grooming Products supplier

  • Located in St. Bartholomä near Graz

  • More than 75 years of experience in their business field

  • Facilities in Austria (HQ), Hungary and China with
    1000+ employees

  • Supplier to A-Brands like Braun, Philips, Wahl etc.

Situation / Object
  • Beardtrimmer and hairclipper products need a stiffer and more precise comb system.
  • Systems on the market are realized with cheap looking  plastic attachment combs
  • Fragile
  • No precise setting (cutting length)
  • Due to the design of the plastic mould the parting line is a problem (burr with e.g. skretches on skin)
Task / Objectives:
  • Search for alternative solutions to plastic attachement combs
  • Requirements:
    • High Quality appearance
      (weight, cold touch, stiff execution and confidence in using)
    • Easy to change and easy adjustment
    • Ready to have also 0,2 [mm] steps
    • Competitive production costs compared to plastic comb

    Impressions from Makerthon #2

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Feel free to call us our write an email if any unanswered questions come to your mind.


    The Makerthone takes place in the Schumpeter Laboratory for Innovation, Inffeldgasse 11, 3 8010 Graz.