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What gets Austria going?

Mechatronics
1. September 2010

Measured in relation to purchasing power, Austria has one of the highest productivity rates in the world. Machine manufacturing, electronics and the innovative mechatronics branch in Austria have achieved major successes in the world marketplace. Austrian Trade Commission will run a segment to discuss the different industrial sectors in the country that has contributed to its exemplary success. In this edition of the news letter, Austrian Trade Commission will discuss the mechatronics branch

Mechanical engineering (machine manufacturing) and electronics are the two most important industrial sectors in Austria. More than one quarter of all industrial employees work in these branches. Outstanding know-how in the field of mechatronics has transformed Austria into one of the leading providers of special purpose machines in Europe.

The mechatronics branch – a fusion of machine construction, electronics and information
technology – is a pulsating high-growth sector. Sooner or later, mechatronic systems will
dominate engine management, safety and infotainment functions in automobiles. ABS (antilock brake system) is only one of many intelligent products encompassed in the field of mechatronics. However, mechatronics is not only an innovation driver in the automotive branch, but in many other industrial sectors as well. For example, mechatronic solutions have become indispensable to the consumer goods industry, and have been built into household devices or mobile telephones. In Austria, some 300 companies with 49,000 employees offering mechatronic systems achieved revenues exceeding EUR 9.6 billion in 2009.
Regardless of whether it involves medical devices, tools, wood processing machines or the automotive sector, Austria has developed an outstanding know-how in the production of custom and special purpose machinery. One key reason is the intensive cooperation which has evolved between the scientific and business communities in the field of mechatronics: approximately 200 to 300 R&D specialists are available to companies. The mechatronics study program offered by Johannes Kepler University in Linz is the most popular course of studies at the Faculty for Natural Sciences and Engineering.

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