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New Management: Dr. Christoph Bleicher Responsible for the Structural Durability Research Area at Fraunhofer LBF
On October 1st, 2022, Dr. Christoph Bleicher took over as head of the Structural Durability Research Department at the Fraunhofer Institute for Structural Durability and System Reliability LBF in Darmstadt. He has many years of experience in fatigue strength research and is well connected in the community. As an expert of the industry and its concerns, one of his goals is to intensify relations with customers and research partners and to advance strategic topics for fatigue strength.
Christoph Bleicher is previously known as a researcher and recognized expert in the casting industry. He has been working and researching at Fraunhofer LBF for 12 years on the service life assessment of cyclically stressed components made of a wide variety of cast materials and headed the "Qualification of Cast Components" group he established. Numerous industrial and research projects on the design and optimization of cyclically stressed cast components were under his responsibility.
Institute Director Prof. Dr. Tobias Melz: "I am pleased that we were able to fill the position internally. Dr. Bleicher is an experienced expert in fatigue strength who has been very committed and successful in introducing new topics for the Fraunhofer LBF and our partners in recent years. He will further expand this in his new area of responsibility in the future." Christoph Bleicher takes over from Rüdiger Heim, who has been responsible for the area in recent years.
Networking Internally and Externally
The "InCeight Casting C8" congress, which addresses the disciplines of design and product development, fatigue strength, non-destructive component testing, foundry technology and simulation in the context of developing optimized cast components, is based on his initiative. In 2021, he received the Galileo Award from the German Society for Materials Science (DGM), the Steel Institute VDEh and the German Association for Materials Research and Testing (DVM). In addition, Christoph Bleicher is active on the board of the Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Initiative Hessen e.V..
Dr. Christoph Bleicher promotes closer networking with clients and research partners in bilateral as well as publicly funded projects in order to be involved in the development tasks and core challenges at an early stage and to be able to offer individual solutions. One goal is to quickly and flexibly align the current research and also the infrastructure at Fraunhofer LBF more to the benefit of the clientele. In conjunction with this, the exchange within the institute is to be further intensified. "I would like to build a large bridge in terms of content to our other areas of adaptronics and plastics with the aim of closer networking. There is potential here that I would like to leverage with the Fraunhofer LBF in order to be the first point of contact for our clientele in the future when it comes to the operational stability of materials, components and systems," explains Dr. Christoph Bleicher.
Another goal is to advance the evaluation of materials required in the context of service life assessment in order to be able to offer all the necessary information and targeted support for component and system development as early as the product development stage. "Fatigue strength occupies an essential position in engineering and materials science, since only with it is it possible to implement lightweight design and efficiency in a targeted manner while at the same time ensuring maximum safety and reliability for components, assemblies and systems, taking into account usage and production boundary conditions," says Dr. Bleicher.
Christoph Bleicher (born 1984) studied mechanical engineering at the Technical University (TU) of Darmstadt and received his doctorate in 2016 for his work on "Assessment of the fatigue strength of large cast components made of ductile cast iron with special consideration of the effects of shrinkage cavities on component service life." He is a foundry specialist engineer (VDG). In 2020, he completed a master's degree in industrial engineering at Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences (M.Sc.).