How Technology and Design Converge

“If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got.” (A. Einstein).

Engineers are nerds. Designers are hipsters. How are they supposed to mix? The first ones see numbers and squares to calculate. The second ones want to create forms to make you feel free. How can they be interested in the same things?

It’s actually easy. There are technologies for designers, with which they can simulate the designed pieces without needing to prototype anything and the engineers can optimize weight, size, price and time to market. People use it to find new ways to design innovative products, from small items like a salt and pepper set to big products like a car.

The Conference CONVERGE 2016

Designing a snazzy desk with software? Really?

Converge 2016, a global conference series for designers, engineers, architects and all types of innovative product creators will demonstrate how this works along with the positive effects of the convergence of design and technology. Not only in theory, but with real life examples from industry experts, engineers, architects, and designers such as:

  • Franco Cimatti, head of vehicle concepts and pre-development at Ferrari
  • Il Hoon Roh, an internationally renowned artist and architect at Studio Il Hoon Roh
  • Turi Cacciatore, industrial designer at Turi Cacciatore
  • Kevin Shin, vice president industrial design at Altair
  • Rafa Corell, CEO at Indigraf
  • Salome Galjaard, senior designer at Arup
  • Franck Mouriaux, general manager structures at RUAG Space
  • Daniel Schneider, technical sales manager at Airbus APWorks
  • Arjen Bender, design director at Philips
  • Prof. Peter Zec, initiator and CEO Red Dot Design Award

The European edition of the conference takes place on September 20-21 in Essen.

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The goal of the conference is to stimulate attendees and to explore the growing creative middle ground, shared by both designers and engineers. Enabled by new software, materials, and manufacturing technologies that are changing the way products are created, designers, architects, and engineers can now be even more innovative in their design and development processes than ever before.

The entire event is supported by several technology partners, presenting solutions for additive manufacturing, HPC, and product creation. One of the main global sponsors of the event series is EOS, the global technology and quality leader for high-end Additive Manufacturing (AM) solutions.

Dr. Adrian Keppler, CMO at EOS said about sponsoring the event: “EOS is proud to support this new CONVERGE conference program as a worldwide sponsor. The EOS Additive Manufacturing offerings are a perfect fit for this event that focuses equally on design and technology. Our technology enables a design-driven manufacturing process and as such opens up completely new design possibilities from Rapid Prototyping through to real part production. As the global technology and quality leader for high-end Additive Manufacturing solutions, EOS is happy to share our knowledge at CONVERGE.”

The Master Classes

To provide attendees with deeper insights, CONVERGE will also offer four so called Master Classes. Each of those Master Classes will cover one of the following topics in depth:

How to Design for Additive Manufacturing – Convert Freedom into Added Value

This Master Class will be hosted jointly by Airbus APWorks, EOS, and solidThinking. The strengths of Additive Manufacturing lie in those areas where conventional manufacturing reaches its limitations. The technology is of interest when it requires a new approach to design and manufacturing which generates new solutions. While EOS and APWorks will be talking about the technology and manufacturing side of things, leveraging their expertise, gained from many years of experience in AM and practical use cases, solidThinking will give insights into how to benefit from additive manufacturing with optimized designs.

How to Start an Innovative Business – Leverage Crowd Funding and Simulation Driven Innovation

The Master Class on successful business foundation will be given by Vortex Bladeless and Altair. Vortex Bladeless was founded in 2013 with private capital and later supported via a crowd-funding campaign. The company’s primary goal is to develop and market a new bladeless wind energy generator, “Vortex Bladeless.” Altair has supported the project by providing software licenses and engineering services to be leveraged in the development process of this new kind of wind turbine. In this Master Class, Vortex will share insights on how to set up an innovative successful technology business supported via crowd funding and simulation driven innovation.

How to Face Design Reactivity Challenge – Master the Tools for Speed and Creativity

This Master Class will focus on design tools and methods. Frank Giese from Kraftraumdesign will describe the design steps from a sketch to perfect free-forms, Thomas Liebe from AD Rem Design and Ari Salonen from Fokus Design will share their insights on the design of beautiful and functional products for today and tomorrow.

How to Design Casted Products – Early and Quick Process Simulation

The Master Class about the design of casted products will focus on design guidelines and simulation processes that need to be considered when designing a product or component that will be manufactured using casting techniques. Kevin Smith from DMT will talk about opportunities for a joint application of casting & additive manufacturing, and solidThinking will present a simulation driven process including optimization, geometry generation and casting simulation with Inspire and Click2Cast.

The Conference Host

The host and organizer of the conference is solidThinking, a provider of design and engineering software solutions. The event will be opened by James Scapa, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer at Altair, parent company of solidThinking. In Mr. Scapa’s Blog Post about CONVERGE on Altair’s blog “Innovation Intelligence” on April 4th, 2016 he describes the motivation for an event series such as CONVERGE as follows: We have a great software and consulting business, a global clientele, and a track record of putting on very impactful technical conferences. It would be easy for us to continue on our regular techno-centric conference path….but we aren’t. We are doing solidThinking CONVERGE because we believe the best days of technology-driven product and experience creation are ahead of us.”

The Global Converge 2016 locations and dates are:

Los Angeles, California, USA: September 8-9
Essen, Germany: September 20-21
Shanghai, China: September 27
Tokyo, Japan: October 14
Bangalore, India: November 16
Seoul, South Korea: November 18

Further global sponsors of the event series are Microsoft and Intel.

small_100522-sanaa11_re-sizedThe experts from solidThinking, its partners EOS, Microsoft, and Intel as well as the hosts at Sanaa-Gebäude in Essen and the Red Dot Design Museum are looking forward to two inspiring days, all about innovative product creation, in Essen.

The European CONVERGE 2016 takes place at: Saana-Gebäude at Zeche Zollverein in Essen, Germany on September 20th and 21st. Take advantage of this opportunity to learn from the best and to share your experiences with fellow product creators.



Mirko Bromberger
Mirko Bromberger

About Mirko Bromberger

Mirko Bromberger is Altair's Marketing Director at Altair GmbH. He has a degree in Industrial Engineering from University of Applied Sciences in Furtwangen, Germany. He has been with Altair since 2004, working in various positions in consulting, application engineering, sales and marketing.