The new laboratory building should offer space for around 400 employees and be completed by 2023, said company boss Klaus Rosenfeld on Monday. “When you process material, you have to understand very well how it works,” said Rosenfeld of the German Press Agency. “We have to deform metals with the highest precision. To do this, we need measurement technology at the highest level. That is one of the pillars of this laboratory,” he said.
The investment is one of the building blocks of a reform program at Schaeffler, which provides for the closure of several locations and the reduction of around 4,400 of the around 90,000 employees worldwide, primarily in Germany.
The union IG Metall had announced resistance to the Schaeffler plans and tried to prevent the closure of individual locations.
In the new central laboratory, the future topics of sustainability and e-mobility are also to be promoted. Components that require very precise measurement technology are built into electric motors. “E-motors are nothing more than precision mechanical components – very thin layers of metal, stacked many times over,” said Schaeffler Board Member for Production, Andreas Schick. “For example, in fuel cells it is about an accuracy of five thousandths of a millimeter – you have to be able to measure and manufacture that,” he emphasized./dm/DP/eas