Thomas, you have already finished your training as Technical Draughtsman at Grammer and added your study of mechanical engineering. What were the reasons for your getting back on board with Grammer after studying?
After I successfully completed my training, I was accepted for a year in the railway department. There I was able to gather my first experiences in the development and construction of seats, which awoke my interest in R&D and motivated me to study mechanical engineering. I kept following the job offerings at Grammer during my studies and coincidentally, shortly before handing in my master thesis, exactly the position I always wanted after my studies was advertised. For me Grammer is an innovative company, which places value on the development of its employees, which is a decisive criterion in the choice of employer for me.
You have been employed as a computational engineer in the R&D area since 2016 in the Amberg area. Please just give us a brief insight into an engineer’s daily routine.
Basically, "calculate, calculate, calculate" applies, but it is nevertheless wide-ranging and exciting. First, I get the geometry data produced by CAD from Development. These are divided into so-called finite elements, to which mathematical equations are applied. I can use this to assess the strength of a complex component under external loads. It is important that I know the precise demands on our products. Finally, I summarise the results and discuss them with the product developer. I attempt to determine the risks and show the potential. An important criterion for the quality of the calculations is the comparison with real product tests in testing. I use the proximity to our experimental department for this and take a close look at the behaviour of our products.
What fascinates you about your job?
In times of ever shorter product life-cycles, good mature products have to be developed earlier than ever. Simulation plays an important role in this. I can decisively shape our products with the aid of different simulation tools, from the first conceptual idea right through to finished series product.
What do you value about Grammer as an employer?
I particularly appreciate the strong bond and deep roots in the Upper Palatinate region. At the same time, I am impressed by the personal development opportunities and the diversity of the workforce which Grammer has as a global company. As an engineer, I am also particularly fond of the many innovations. Innovations drive the development of our products and our many patents are proof of this.