The Best of Both Worlds: Academic and Industrial Research at ModuleWorks


Academic research and practical knowledge of the industry are often seen as two opposites – but not at ModuleWorks. People at all stages in their academic career excel with their knowledge and incorporate it into their day-to-day work. The past year has provided numerous occasions to celebrate academic distinctions. Since academia fuels the application of knowledge in the industry, this article takes a closer look at the faces and stories behind last year’s successes and their role in ModuleWorks as a company.

Sariel Coronado holding his award for best undergraduate thesis in Mechanical Engineering at McGill University, after completing a project on LPBF additive manufacturing with ModuleWorks.
Graduate Sariel Coronado with his award for top Mechanical Engineering thesis at McGill University, showcasing his collaboration with ModuleWorks on LPBF additive manufacturing and his current career in flight simulator software integration.

Sariel’s graduation at the McGill University.

Best of His Cohort - Sariel Coronado

In 2022, Sariel Coronado graduated in Mechanical Engineering after submitting his bachelor thesis entitled An XML-based Information Model for the Exchange of Laser Powder Bed Fusion (LPBF) Additive Manufacturing Process. He wrote the thesis in cooperation with ModuleWorks as an industrial partner and was awarded the best undergraduate thesis of his cohort at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. Sariel has now found a job that has him traveling around the world for most of the year doing software integration for flight simulators.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Marc Stautner smiles as a professor at the University of Applied Sciences Ruhr-West, following a successful career at ModuleWorks and his ongoing role as Research Director, bridging academia and industry.
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Marc Stautner celebrates his nomination as a professor at the University of Applied Sciences Ruhr-West, reflecting on his accomplishments at ModuleWorks and his continued dedication to connecting academic research with industry applications.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Stautner and the congratulation gift of his team.

Nominated Professor after Many Successful Years at Moduleworks - Prof. Dr.-Ing. Marc Stautner

A huge step in the academic career of Dr.-Ing. Marc Stautner was his nomination to professor at the University of Applied Sciences Ruhr-West in Mühlheim, Germany. Marc initially graduated in computer science at the Technical University of Dortmund. Immediately afterwards, he began his doctorate at the Institute of Machining Technology at the university. As soon as he successfully obtained his doctorate, he started working at ModuleWorks and eventually became Head of Research. After 16 years of working for ModuleWorks, he was asked to teach and he agreed. He now works full-time at the university and has significantly reduced his working hours at the company, but luckily remains as ModuleWorks Research Director. He continues to build important connections between academic knowledge and its application in the industry, both in the ModuleWorks Research Department and his university.

Dr. rer. nat. Valentina König, an aerospace enthusiast, proudly displays her Mathematics doctorate from RWTH Aachen University and shares her exciting journey as a Research Manager for Innovative Technologies at ModuleWorks.

Dr.rer. nat. Valentina König with her congratulation gift to match her work on aerospace.

A Doctorate in Aerospace - Dr. Rer. Nat. Valentina König

Like Marc, Dr. rer. nat. Valentina König is a member of the Research Team. She completed her doctorate in Mathematics at the RWTH Aachen University last year. Valentina has been fascinated by aerospace for as long as she can remember. She did her bachelor thesis on the aerospace project TRR40, researching the development of a 1D solver for a porous medium. This first thesis ignited her passion for the project and she continued working on it as a student worker during her master’s and doctoral studies. The project gave her the opportunity to attend European and international conferences, to travel to Vernon and Ottobrunn to visit Airbus as well as the Ariane Group and see the engine inventory in Lamporzhausen. She was also able to attend the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics SciTech Forum and witnessed the start of a Delta 5 firsthand during her subsequent vacation in the USA.

Working at ModuleWorks as a postdoc, she is able to live her passion for research and software and even expand it to production as a Research Manager for Innovative Technologies. She is currently managing more than ten research projects that pave the way for present and future ModuleWorks technologies.

Dr.-Ing. Markus Frings celebrates his achievements in fluid mechanics and software development as a doctor of engineering from RWTH Aachen University and his role in the ModuleWorks Industry Team.
With a doctorate in engineering from RWTH Aachen University, Dr.-Ing. Markus Frings showcases his expertise in fluid mechanics, software development, and interdisciplinary work at ModuleWorks.

In German tradition, Dr.-Ing. Markus Frings received a fun graduation hat to match his defense on sailing physics.

From Fluid Mechanics to ModuleWorks - Dr.-Ing. Markus Frings

Dr.-Ing. Markus Frings always enjoyed solving mathematical or technical problems and while studying at the RWTH Aachen University, he found his enthusiasm for software development and a fascination for fluid mechanics. This interest and his studies led him to become a student worker at engineering institutes from his second semester onwards. He continued working for these institutes and once finished with his Master’s, his fascination had not subsided. The Chair for Computational Analysis of Technical Systems offered him a doctoral studentship, so he decided to stay at the university. With ten scientific publications, including a book chapter and conference proceedings at international conferences, these years at the university were very successful. His publication Individualized Production in Tool-based Manufacturing Processes Using Numerical Optimization was even honoured with the Young Researchers Award of the Excellence Cluster Integrative Production Technology for High-Wage Countries.

In 2022, he became a doctor of engineering with his thesis Numerical Process and Shape Optimization for Aluminum High-Pressure Die Casting and held his defense on sailing physics. Similar to Valentina, Markus likes interdisciplinary work in production engineering, software development and applied mathematics. He continues this passion in the ModuleWorks Industry Team by developing customer-tailored software for manufacturing processes.

Dr. Yavuz Murtezaoglu receives the prestigious Pierre Nicolau Award from CIRP at the General Assembly in Bilbao, Spain, for his contributions to software-driven digitalization in production engineering.
Dr. Yavuz Murtezaoglu, founder of ModuleWorks, being honored with the CIRP Pierre Nicolau Award at the General Assembly in Bilbao, Spain, for his pioneering work in software-based production engineering.

Dr. Yavuz Murtezaoglu at the CIRP General Assembly in Bilbao, Spain.

Bringing Software to Production Engineering - Dr. Yavuz Murtezaoglu’s CIRP Award

Six months ago in August, Dr. Yavuz Murtezaoglu was awarded the Pierre Nicolau Award by the CIRP, the highest honour of the world’s leading organization in production engineering research. CIRP unites leading researchers and CEOs on the design, optimization, control and management of processes, machines and systems. Last year, the award was presented for the first time to the director of a company that exclusively produces software. Previous awards have been presented to individuals of large corporations, for example Prof. Dr.-Ing. Joachim Milberg, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of BMW AG until 2015 or in 2007 to Dr. Yoshihru Inaba, President and CEO of FANUC Ltd, and in 2008 to Prof. Dr.-Ing. Klaus Wucherer who worked at Siemens.

In founding ModuleWorks Dr. Murtezaoglu was a forerunner for software driven digitalization which is currently one of the top priorities in production engineering – in academic research, but even more so in industrial applications. The award nicely illustrates this shift.

Industry and Academia at Moduleworks - Two Sides of the Same Coin

Lots of talented academics start their own university spin-offs, especially in Germany, but many of them do not succeed because they retain an academic mindset and stick to academic methodologies. They lack an understanding of their customers’ concerns and needs and thus miss the opportunity to deploy new products and services at the right time.

But it would be too simplistic to view this as one sided: complex problems like the Digital Transformation of Manufacturing require holistic concepts because customers might not know exactly what is needed. Rather, customers need to explain their challenges which can then be complemented with systematic thinking and methodologies to find an efficient and sustainable solution.

This is where ModuleWorks strikes an exceptional balance with its team of employees from both academia and industry. By combining the best of both worlds, ModuleWorks applies a sound methodology to develop sophisticated solutions that reach beyond academia to meet the challenges facing the industry today. Approached with this attitude and in this manner, academia and industry are two sides of the same coin and not at all incompatible.

About ModuleWorks

ModuleWorks is the leading software component provider for the digital manufacturing industry. With over 200 employees and 1500 person-years of software development, ModuleWorks’ expertise in toolpath creation and simulation is recognized throughout the industry and its software components are already optimizing the performance and quality of over 500,000 installed seats of CAD/CAM and CNC software around the world. From standard products to exclusive development projects, ModuleWorks helps companies to bring their vision of Industry 4.0 to life. With its comprehensive portfolio of cutting-edge software components, ModuleWorks enables its customers to optimize their CAD/CAM solutions and connect to CNC/MTB systems to increase their competitiveness and help them Get There Faster.

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