Updated: Jul 7
Written by Kfir Kedem - June 09, 2020
Volkswagen runs an incubator program in which they invest in several companies that could benefit the automotive industry. They have recently invested in six companies, one of which is LiGenium GmbH.
When discussing sustainability in the automotive industry, the developments and innovations usually pertain to the cars themselves. LiGenium strives to make the manufacturing process more sustainable; they produce technical components, machine elements, and machines out of wood or wood-based materials. There are significant sustainability advantages when it comes to using wood as a construction material. When creating the machines, creating ones made of wood leads to a significant reduction in carbon emissions when compared to any other relevant material.
The wood-based materials are lightweight and reduce noise/ vibrations. Some systems such as LiGenium’s transport roller conveyer and dolly could greatly benefit from the vibration reductions that come with a wood-based system.
Auto Trendy’s take:
The automotive industry has been developing and innovating sustainable methods of manufacturing since its inception. Manufacturers are constantly looking for ways to reduce material wastage, use more efficient equipment, and recycle. These are the factors that were mainly focused on as they were methods to reduce costs. LiGenium gives an interesting solution to machines that are needed on assembly lines that are not responsible for material manipulation. These wood machines give a new sustainable solution. On average wood costs less than steel, so using wood-based machinery where possible would likely lower costs too. It is likely a wise decision for Volkswagen to invest in LiGenium and it would be interesting to see if other automotive OEMs start to utilize wood equipment in their facilities.