Image processing - training and research secured at Ilmenau University of Technology

The 2014/15 winter semester saw the endowment of an Industrial Image Processing Professorship at Ilmenau University of Technology. The aim is to advance interdisciplinary training for engineers in the field of industrial image processing at Ilmenau University of Technology.

Vision & Control, one of the founding companies of the professorship, recognized early on that the demand for well-trained engineers in this field would rise with increasing automation and digitization.

Industrial image processing is an interdisciplinary science where problems involving optics, electronics, lighting engineering and IT all have a role to play. As a result, an Optical Systems Engineering/Optronics course that is supported by the field was launched at Ilmenau University of Technology.

The professorship is based in the department of quality assurance and industrial image processing, which conducts industry-based pure research and applied research in industrial image processing. It develops methods, algorithms and systems solutions for obtaining, processing and analyzing images for application in particular in quality assurance and process control in production, robotics, food production, construction, medical engineering and security technology.

Professor Notni, the holder of the professorship, continues to head up the Optical Systems Department at the Fraunhofer Institute for Optics and Precision Engineering (IOF) in Jena.

On October 19, 2015, Prof. Notni invited the founders to Jena to introduce them to his work there and report on his work in the first year at Ilmenau University of Technology. Combining the work carried out at Ilmenau University of Technology and the IOF is harnessing very lucrative synergies. For example, the founder companies, Prof. Notni and the IOF are collaborating on a series of research projects. At the IOF, 22 students are also currently working at various levels (i.e. work experience, undergraduate and postgraduate degree level). At Ilmenau University of Technology, Prof. Notni's field has been able to procure significant third-party funding for research projects. As a result, the field occupies a prominent place at Ilmenau University of Technology.

After the introduction provided by the Fraunhofer Institute and by the department in particular, the representatives of the founding companies viewed the laboratories at the Institute and gained an impression of the outstanding research and development activities, mainly in the areas of rapid 3D measuring technology and scattered light measurement.

During the discussion, it was established that a great need for engineers exists both at the founding companies and throughout Germany. German universities are currently unable to cover this need. The low numbers applying for engineering courses, including Optical Systems Engineering/Optronics, are a significant factor here. The simple answer is to recommend to young people who are interested in engineering that they consider engineering courses. And in Thuringia in particular, in the Jena/Erfurt/Ilmenau/Suhl technology hub, they can expect new opportunities for attractive job openings now and in the future.