Key to Smart Products!

Climate protection through energy and resource efficiency

Energy and
resource efficient
Smart materials
and intelligent production

Within the cooperation network SmartPro, Aalen University works on new materials and technologies to fight climate change and to provide solutions for the social challenge of digital transformation. To improve energy efficiency and resource conservation as well as digitization of today’s technologies, the university is collaborating with over 60 partners from industry and academia. Together, we develop smart materials and intelligent technologies for future products – for you!

How do we achieve this?

We provide key foundations for future energy-efficient and resource-saving products – enabling a high quality of life for tomorrow. To achieve this, new materials and technologies are explored, and existing ones are further developed and optimized for particular applications.

SmartPro: Smart materials and intelligent production technologies for energy-efficient products of the future

Our vision …

The SmartPro network makes significant contributions to climate protection by reducing primary energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

Our mission

Increase energy and resource efficiency, reduce and recycle critical materials, and accompany the digital transformation.

Energy and resource efficient products

Smart products for a sustainable tomorrow

With over 60 partners from business and science, Aalen University is researching smart materials and intelligent technologies for sustainable products. SmartPro: Impulse generator for a high quality of life – also tomorrow! Improved energy efficiency and climate protection as well as the protection of critical resources are central goals of the partnership.

More about SmartPro research

energy converters

Tailor-made and quality-assured magnetic materials for energy-efficient and resource-conserving electric motors

How will the electricity we use be generated in the future? How do electric motors become light and compact, efficient and resource-saving? In the energy converter application field, everything revolves around magnetic materials and magnets in systems such as electric motors and generators, where mechanical energy is converted into electrical energy (or vice versa). The goal in SmartPro is to produce magnets of assured quality with reduced amounts of critical resources and to improve their resilience and lifespan.

More about the energy converter projects

energy storage systems

New material concepts, innovative process technologies and evaluation tools for future lithium-based battery systems

What will drive our cars in the future – climate-friendly without coal and oil? How do we efficiently store energy from regenerative sources? New material concepts, innovative process technologies and evaluation tools for future lithium-based battery systems are the focus of the energy storage application field. The aim is to improve the energy density of pioneering solid-state batteries, reduce costs through smart cell concepts and ensure quality using intelligent machine learning-based methods.

More about the energy storage projects

lightweight construction

Smart die casting strategies and innovative joining processes and testing technologies for hybrid lightweight constructions

What type of construction and design philosophy is important across all sectors in order to achieve energy and resource efficiency? It’s the lightweight construction. In this SmartPro application field, innovative constructions and joining technologies as well as intelligent quality assurance are developed. The focus here is on multi-material composites, for example the combination of carbon fibers and metals, as well as non-destructive testing methods for joints using ultrasonic microscopy that are suitable for series production, as well as machine learning – based error assessment using computer tomography.

More about lightweight construction projects

Additive manufacturing

Platform Additive Technologies

The powerful cross-sectional technology of additive manufacturing – more commonly known as 3D printing – is being further developed in close cooperation with the three fields of application. Additive manufacturing can significantly reduce resource consumption by efficiently using only the amount of material where and how much is needed on a component. The platform created as part of SmartPro offers new process technologies from 6-axis robots to printing processes for soft magnetic materials and material innovations – for example for wear-resistant tools.

More about additive manufacturing projects

Machine Learning

Application-oriented (efficient) machine learning methods for smart production systems

Artificial intelligence is used in the cross-sectional technology of machine learning to develop smart production systems. The quality assurance of magnets for efficient electrical machines, batteries for cordless devices and e-mobility as well as resource-saving lightweight components is the central goal when machine learning methods are newly developed or applied and adapted to application-specific cases. The close exchange with all fields of application networks the SmartPro partnership even more.

More about the machine learning projects

Smart materials and intelligent production technologies

Sustainable technologies and processes for a better tomorrow

Research priorities in SmartPro are in the application fields of energy converters, energy storage and lightweight construction – in close connection with the cross-sectional technologies of additive manufacturing and machine learning. In so-called “impulse projects” with a duration of 4 years, the main research areas are processed in SmartPro. Especially at the interfaces, innovative ideas and research approaches are created through close cooperation.

More about SmartPro research

SmartPro: a strong partnership

Within the SmartPro network, we have been developing solutions for social challenges such as climate protection and digital transformation since 2017.

The research of the strategic partnership focuses on the areas of magnetic materials, batteries, and lightweight construction, complemented and linked by the technologies additive manufacturing (better known as 3D printing) and machine learning (specific methods of artificial intelligence). Industry partners range from small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) of the region to global market leaders and hidden champions.

SmartPro is an important catalyst for the region and combines expertise in materials and process technology. Short distances and close cooperation facilitate the transfer of innovations in materials and processes into industry.

But what exactly do the researchers do? Take a look here!

// Corporations and medium-sized companies
// SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises)
// Other research institutions
// Transfer players


Working groups


SmartPro projects

SmartPro-related projects

Million euros: Project funds

Scientific publications


Conference contributions

Shaping the Future

Special supplement in ›bild der wissenschaft‹ and ›Industrieanzeiger‹

Aufbruch in Aalen: Sonder­beilage in ›bild der wissenschaft‹ und Industrie­anzeiger

You can get deeper insights into SmartPro’s research activities in the supplement:

Are you interested? Then contact us!


SmartPro // FH-Impuls:
Strong universities of applied sciences – impulses for the region

With SmartPro, Aalen University of Applied Sciences has positioned itself in the top group of universities of applied sciences nationwide. SmartPro is one of ten partnerships funded by the funding measure “FH-Impuls” of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research with around 10 million euros from 2017 until 2025. Core objectives are the sustainable expansion of the regional transfer and cooperation network, the strengthening of research, and innovative power. SmartPro makes contributions to social challenges such as climate protection and digitization.