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Ergomach — Diseño ergonómico de la interacción hombre - máquina herramienta

The competitive strength of the machine-tools manufacturers of Asia (and not only of Asia) is challenging the world leadership of the European firms: 14.000 companies, with 1.500.000 employees. The challenge should be faced through an improvement of innovative capabilities and surely in the field of design, safety and usability there are opportunities of innovation: in order to produce more suitable –in terms of ergonomic comfort- machines and tools. Europe is world wide often associated with the idea of reasonably good quality of life. Innovation, also in the industrial field, must reflect when possible such an association: i.e a good quality of the working life. Ergonomics applied to automation and to the man-machine interaction is innovation that favours the conquest of a better working life. Which is a must for Europe: as a distinctive feature of our Continent in the world. Training professionals, engineers and designers for the afore-mentioned challenges is the goal of the project. But the machine tools manufacturers constitute a fragmented universe and it is well known that training is often not at the top of the European industrialists’ concerns. Therefore training can’t be a course based on face to face lessons. Distance learning should be the appropriate way of training them and their staff. Also the introduction of such a training in the curriculum of studies of the future engineers can help. Particularly when considering that the promoter –a university department- has a special experience in the field, witnessed by the thousands and thousands of students attending since years the relevant e.learning activities produced in the last decade -- OBJECTIVES AND ACTIVITIES: The project main objective is the improvement of the individual competences through an e.learning-via internet- training course on ergonomics in the sectors of machine tool design and production. The projected e.learning course is devoted to the designers and technical staff personnel of machine-tools producers: an industrial sector, that of machine-tools production, very important for the European economy, but currently a champion at risk.Therefore a substantial improvement of its innovative capacity in terms of ergonomics should help to reinforce competitivity and maintain the leadership. The innovative content of the proposed e.learning training course is due to the item –ergonomics in industry- rather popular in the years ’70 and ’80 but now marginal, if not hardly forgotten. -- RESULTS AND PRODUCTS: The first expected result is a survey of the need of ergonomics in the machine-tools industrial sector: i.e the temptative individuation of the many opportunities existing in the compartment in terms of improvement of usability, safety and user’s friendliness. The second result is the translation of that need into training activities devoted to educate professionals to discover the ergonomic potentials when conceiving , designing and manufacturing new products, or laying out new industrial processes The third result is production of an e.learning course for the fruition of such a training, After a pilot initiative of duly monitored training, the programme will reach the definitive version and the e.learning –via internet- training course will be ready for use. -- POTENTIAL FUTURE: The partnership envisage an extension of the current training programme to other sectors as textiles, shoes etc, subsequent to an adequate re-make.
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