Dec 19, 2003 - Industrial Design students at the University for Applied Science, FH Joanneum Graz, Austria presented their diploma projects in the annual degree exhibition in June. The students also participated in the 'Moving Emotion' sponsored-project, which was featured in 'Auto Art', an exhibition of show cars held in Graz in June.
The graduating Diploma students were: Katharina Dankl, Lisa Hampel, Daniel Zeisner, Irina Stollberger, Peter Umgeher, Marek Simko, Eva Heu, Frank Rettenbacher, Johannes Geisler, Gerald Wirthenstaetter, Raimund Klausegger, and Elisabeth Schwarz
Eighth term diploma student Frank Rettenbacher proposed 'Bjur', a compact Volvo. "The Volvo BJUR is intended to expand the philosophy of Volvo. As Volvo has no model in the compact class this could be altered by introducing a new concept for a younger generation. In the first place Bjur embodies adventure – mobile space, which allows that it is not just used for transportation. A place to enjoy spare time, to rest, to work, to listen to music or just to discuss with friends.
The asymmetry of the car caters for a wide use of the space (like snowboards and bulky luggage), as the actual boot was moved to the side of the car, with access through a large folding door. Above all the leisure aspect must be emphasized and is achieved by the main concept of a lounge atmosphere, when all doors are open."
Diploma student Marek Simko presented 'Robin', a muscle-powered vehicle concept for children aged from four to seven, a vehicle that doesn’t imitate any existing category of vehicle. "Components used for the technical layout are common parts used in the bicycle industry, to decrease development and production costs. The engine is the child’s muscle power combined with cog belt drive propulsion; its efficiency can be compared to an ordinary chain. To adjust the driving speed, it’s possible to shift gears via the internal hub gear drive that is integrated in the rear suspension unit.
Robin is a collapsible structure, so after use, you just flip the rear swing arm parts and the back rest of the bucket seat forwards. The vehicle is conceived primarily for one driver. In order to give your peers a lift, the chosen one out of the crowd may stand on the bars that are implemented in the swing arms and enjoy the beautiful landscape out there."
Peter Umgeher presented 'Terje', a snowmobile concept. "My aim was to develop a concept of mobility which thinks ahead of the requirements of todays freestyle standards, a cross over between trial and downhill bike, a more progressive way of moving off-road, especially on winter terrain with the focus on freestyling and freeriding.
A major part of the concept was to design a light easy-to-ride snow mobile wich allows one to make short jumps and controlled wheelies just by knowing a few basic skills. A high pitch of spring of the stable telescopic fork and a good suspension of the track make those stunts possible. The seat is more to rest than to sit, since it is essential to ride a snow mobile in semi-standing position. These stunts can be done safely at a slow speed which simplifies the learning and allows practice with low risk.
"I decided to power the snowmobile with a 250cc four-cycle-engine which provides a lot of riding fun and accellerates well at low revs. The overall weight, and weight distribution of the vehicle is of enormous importance." Due to the use of only one ski the handling reminds of a snowboard regarding the possibility of steering just by shifting ones body weight, comparable to motocross machines. "How must a product like a snow mobile change in order to challenge a generation which knows no fear?"
Raimund Klausegger's 'Allegro' is a luxury fliying boat for a maximum of six people. By utilizing ground effect, it flies very efficiently and quietly about three meters above the water surface despite extremely high speeds. The dome-shaped wing gives additional support to the generation of an air cushion, and the wings can also be used as a sun deck – an awning can be rolled out on both sides from the slightly raised roof .
Earlier in the year, the students participated in "Moving Emotion", a transportation design project sponsored by Magna Steyr in the 7th semester, fall 2002/03. Advisor on the project was Achim Storz , visiting professor and head of Design a Storz, Zell am See, Austria.
"Moving Emotion: 2020, four wheels, two passengers, an hommage to Steyr automobiles and a benchmark of Bentley.“ Those were the purposely brief guidelines that Achim Storz gave his students, leaving them a great deal of room for experimentation in their design projects.
These projects were part of the exhibition "Auto Art" (an international concept car show) within the scope of "Graz 2003 - Cultural Capital of Europe“ which was held at the Stadthalle Graz, May 29-June 15, 2003.
'Loè' by Katharina Dankl won the first prize in the Moving Emotion Award.
"Loè is an unconventional approach to mobility, being a statement in favor of a new 'slow down', its maximum speed is 40 km/h. The objective was to provide a hammock-like feeling while gliding through scenery. Loè is built on layers – honeycomb sandwiched in aluminium sheets – a flexible membrane puts the focus on the human, who is made the focus of the vehicle.
The vehicle is powered by solar cells implemented in the canopy, a battery structure, and wheel hub engines, and features an autopilot system. "Loè is a vehicle that appeals to awareness and not to speed."
'Pio' by Lisa Hampel won the second prize in the Moving Emotion award. It is an inviting, friendly vehicle that is flooded with sunlight for easy-going people who prefer to enjoy the landscape around them at a leisurely pace – wood and glass give the vehicle a cozy, comfortable feeling.
Steyr Centaur by Raimund Klausegger was awarded the third prize in the Moving Emotion Award. "The basic idea was to create a car that is completely covered with a dark but transparent material. Window and chassis surfaces form one single unit. The cabin is narrow because the passenger sits behind the driver, and the wedge-shaped spaces at the sides contain engine and stowage compartments.
NEO 2 by Peter Umgeher recieved a commendation by the judges. It is a mountain access car, an environmentally friendly way to access off-road driving areas that cannot be accessed by regular vehicles. A divided trunk makes it possible to separate hardware (snowboards, shoes, christmas tree) and soft goods. It is close to the shape of the Steyr Pinzgauer, but without the military touch, and is powered by a hydrogen fuel cell.
'Huartes' by Frank Rettenbacher is a combination of two completely different car makes that is a mixture of contrasts. A smooth and dynamic shape with a high tail, long nose, long wheel base, and a sloping rear part remind the viewer of the typical bentley shape. In contrast, the hard-edged architectural design represents the Steyr component. The flowing glass roof stands for the strong connection to nature. It adapts to its environment through the use of photochromic glass, which changes its level of transparency according to the intensity of the light.
The FH Joanneum in Graz is one of the highest standing educational institutions, as ranked by the Bureau of European Designer Associations (BEDA) in Europe. Among the cornerstones is a regular duration of study of eight semesters, a limit of 16 student places on the course, demanding an intensive collaboration between students and teaching staff, and a strict practical orientation.
During the first two semesters of the Industrial Design course, the basic skills and knowledge that are important for the industrial designer are imparted to the students.
During the 3rd, 4th, 6th and 7th semester, the students participate in interdisciplinary training that supplies them with specialized knowledge in the core subjects and an overview of the complementary subjects. Core subjects are projects, which deal with the problems that industrial practice runs into in the design of consumer goods and items of capital expenditure. The complementary subjects teach the necessary technical and constructional as well as economic and social basics.
The fifth semester is dedicated solely to practical training in a design firm or design department in a company.
During the final 8th semester, the students devote their time exclusively to working on a master's thesis, which is practice oriented. The academic degree of Diplomingenieur (FH) is awarded which is equivalent to a Masters degree. For their thesis, the students work independently on a topic, approved by their major professor. The thesis work can also be done abroad or within the scope of a collaboration with a company
Website: FH Joanneum - Industrial Design
Photos: FH JOANNEUM Industrial Design, Graz